River Thame

River Thame

name = Thame
native_name =
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image_size =
image_caption = River Thame south of Dorchester (wider than usual because of flood waters)
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country = England
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region_type = Counties
region = Buckinghamshire
region1 = Oxfordshire
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district_type = Districts / Boroughs
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city_type = Towns
city = Aylesbury
city1 = Dorchester
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length = 65
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source_location = Vale of Aylesbury
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mouth_name = River Thames
mouth_location = Dorchester
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map_caption =Rivers Thame (cyan) and Thames (blue) in south-east England

The River Thame (pronounced as "tame") is a river in southern England. It is now considered a tributary of the larger and better-known River Thames and should not be confused with it by the similarity of names.

The general course of the River Thame is north-east to south-west and the distance from its source to the River Thames is about 40 miles (65km). It flows through the English counties of Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire.

The River Thame's source is several small streams which rise in the Vale of Aylesbury on the north side of the Chiltern Hills. These streams converge north-east of Aylesbury, the county town of Buckinghamshire. Aylesbury played an important role in the English Civil War when John Hampden (the town's Member of Parliament) defended Aylesbury at the Battle of Holman's Bridge, which crosses the Thame to the north of Aylesbury, in 1642.

The vale streams converge very close to the new village of Watermead. After leaving Watermead, the River Thame flows through farmland passing the small villages of Nether Winchendon and Chearsley before reaching the market town of Thame with which it shares its name. Thame is about convert|15|mi|km east of Oxford and grew from an Anglo-Saxon settlement beside the river. In Anglo-Saxon times, Thame was in the Diocese of Dorchester.

From the town of Thame, the River Thame swings southward and after passing the villages of Great Milton and Stadhampton, its valley widens out. In this area in 1642 and 1643, the river acted as an important line of defence for Royalist Oxford. The bridges at Wheatley, Cuddesdon Mill and Chiselhampton were key crossing points, with Chiselhampton bridge playing a critical part in Prince Rupert's movements before and after the Battle of Chalgrove Field. [ [http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1842126393 History of the Great Civil War: 1642-1644 Vol 1 by Samuel R Gardiner] ]

The River Thame then reaches the small town of Dorchester, Oxfordshire (not to be confused with Dorchester, Dorset). There was a Romano-British settlement here and the town itself is of Anglo-Saxon origin. The Saxon cathedral in Dorchester was later superseded by Dorchester Abbey, which is preserved.

A mile south of Dorchester, the River Thame flows into the River Thames on the reach above Benson Lock. Correctly, the Thames is named the River Isis until this point, and only after the confluence is the river named the Thames, a name derived from the contraction of the names of the 2 rivers - "Thame-Isis" becoming the Latin "Tamesis", and thence the English version.Fact|date=August 2008 Current Ordnance Survey maps label the Thames as "River Thames or Isis" until Dorchester.

ee also

*List of rivers of England
*River Tame


River item line|upstream=Wilts & Berks Canal (south)
downstream=River Pang (south)

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Look at other dictionaries:

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