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Thread: Old English Place names

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    Old English Place names

    In "The origin of the Anglo Sacon Race" by Thomas William Shore (1906), there is a claim made by the author that some Slavic peoples took part in the Anglo Saxon "invasion" of England. In one example, he points to the place name of "Rugarthorpe" (modern day rogerthorpe, which has been incorporated into Thorpe Audlin, Yorkshire). He claims that this is evidence of Rugii/Rugini/Rujani settlement in Yorkshire.

    From what I can understand, "Thorpe" = small village. However, I am not framiliar with old English place names... Is the "rugar/roger" prefix of the name common anywhere else in old English? Or can the name Rugarthorpe be interpreted as "small village of the Rugini"?

    Also, the lord of Rugarthorpe in 1066 is "Alsi son of Karski". The Karski name stands out to me because it reminds me very much of Polish surnames that end with "-ski". However, I can't find a Slavic "Kar-". Does anyone have any thoughts on what the name's origin might be? Or the origin of the "Alsi" name?

    Any thoughts/comments are welcome!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brent.B View Post
    In "The origin of the Anglo Sacon Race" by Thomas William Shore (1906), there is a claim made by the author that some Slavic peoples took part in the Anglo Saxon "invasion" of England. In one example, he points to the place name of "Rugarthorpe" (modern day rogerthorpe, which has been incorporated into Thorpe Audlin, Yorkshire). He claims that this is evidence of Rugii/Rugini/Rujani settlement in Yorkshire.
    Old books can come up with some weird stuff. This one is about as likely as me flying to the moon. Thorpe (from Old Norse) = 'Outlying farm/settlement'. Rogerthorpe is so obscure that it does not come up in a search of the database of English Place-Names at http://kepn.nottingham.ac.uk/ , but presumably it just comes from the personal name Roger.

    Badsworth, Upton and Rogerthorpe [spelled Rugartorp] were held in 1066 by two brothers (unnamed in Domesday Book) and by Ilbert de Lacey in 1086. See http://opendomesday.org/place/SE4615/rogerthorpe-manor/

    The name Alsi or Aelfsige is Anglo-Saxon. "Karski" is most probably a mis-reading.

    In THORPE (Audlin), Alsige had 6 carucates and 3 bovates of land taxable where 5 ploughs are possible. Now Ralph has (it) from Ilbert. He himself (has) there 1 ½ ploughs; and 8 villagers and 6 smallholders who have 3 ½ ploughs. There is there, 1 mill site; meadow, 1 acre. Value before 1066 £4; now 40s.
    http://www.michael-milsom.org.uk/mdm...s/lacyland.htm

    Audelin's (from the OGer personal name Aldelin) son William was a tenant of Thorpe in 1190, from which the place took the name Thorpe Audling.
    Last edited by Jean M; 08-08-2016 at 12:13 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jean M View Post
    Old books can come up with some weird stuff. This one is about as likely as me flying to the moon. Thorpe (from Old Norse) = 'Outlying farm/settlement'. Rogerthorpe is so obscure that it does not come up in a search of the database of English Place-Names at http://kepn.nottingham.ac.uk/ , but presumably it just comes from the personal name Roger.

    Badsworth, Upton and Rogerthorpe [spelled Rugartorp] were held in 1066 by two brothers (unnamed in Domesday Book) and by Ilbert de Lacey in 1086. See http://opendomesday.org/place/SE4615/rogerthorpe-manor/

    The name Alsi or Aelfsige is Anglo-Saxon. "Karski" is most probably a mis-reading.


    http://www.michael-milsom.org.uk/mdm...s/lacyland.htm

    Audelin's (from the OGer personal name Aldelin) son William was a tenant of Thorpe in 1190, from which the place took the name Thorpe Audling.
    Yeah I figure a lot in his book is antiquated. I was more interested by a quote from Bede that he talks about. Bede says the "Rugini" settled in England. I believe Shore was attempting to make the connection by finding similar sounding place names.

    But I am still curious about the "rugar/roger" part of the name. When I looked up the origin of the name "roger", Wikipedia said that it's origins are French and that it was first introduced to the British Isles by the Normans. Apparently the norse version is Hrošgar?

    Are there many examples of "rugar/roger" being used in old english place names? My reasoning is that if Rugar is a very rare prefix (?) in old english, then perhaps it does represent a foreign element in the naming of the village.

    Also, I don't think Karski is a mis-reading? TORWORTH and CALDECOTES are both associated with him from what I can understand
    Last edited by Brent.B; 08-08-2016 at 01:36 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brent.B View Post
    I was more interested by a quote from Bede that he talks about. Bede says the "Rugini" settled in England.
    Bede doesn't say that. Shore is misunderstanding the source. Mind you this particular passage in Bede is easily misunderstood! In book five, chapter nine of The Ecclesiastical History, Bede describes the mission of Egbert to the Germans:

    He knew that there the very many peoples in Germany, from whom the Angles and Saxons, who now live in Britain, derive their origin; hence even to this day they are by a corruption called Garmani by their neighbours the Britons. Now these people are the Frisians, Rugians [Rugi], Danes, Huns, Old Saxons and Boruhtware [Bructeri]; there are also many other nations in the same land who are still practising heathen rites to whom this soldier of Christ proposed to go..
    So it is easy to get confused and imagine that Bede is listing the Germani who came to Britain. He is not. He makes clear elsewhere that it was the Angles, Saxons and Jutes who came to Britain, and here mentions the Angles and Saxons again as having come to Britain. The rest are peoples still in Germany.
    Last edited by Jean M; 08-08-2016 at 10:08 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brent.B View Post
    Also, I don't think Karski is a mis-reading? TORWORTH and CALDECOTES are both associated with him from what I can understand
    Ah yes. I see. http://opendomesday.org/name/316550/...ather-of-alsi/

    • Caldecotes in Nottinghamshire was held in 1066 by a man called Caschi [the spelling in Domesday], identified by the Phillimore edition of Domesday Book as "Karski, the father of Alsi".
    • Torworth in Nottinghamshire was held in 1066 by Brictsi and Caschin, the latter identified by the Phillimore edition of Domesday Book as the same "Karski, the father of Alsi".


    The Prosopography of Anglo-Saxon England (PASE) identifies the chap in Torworth as Kaski 'of Torworth'. http://domesday.pase.ac.uk/Domesday?...ersonkey=50114 and the chap in Caldecotes as Karski 'of Elton'. http://domesday.pase.ac.uk/Domesday?...ersonkey=50111. There is an Alsige son of Karski with large holdings in Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire, http://domesday.pase.ac.uk/Domesday?...ersonkey=48749, which explains why the Phillimore edition presumed that they had located the Karski in question in Caldecotes and Torworth.

    Have to confess that I had not noticed Alsige son of Karski before, though he was evidently a thane. As for "Karski" [edit] I have now found the explanation:

    The Domesday forms of his father's name - Caschin, Caschi - represent the hypothetical Old Norse Karski: von Feilitzen, Pre-Conquest Personal Names of Domesday Book, p. 302. The Phillimore printed translation has Kaskin, but the Old Norse form has been chosen for the present edition. The Alecto edition has Karski. ....

    KARSKI [* FATHER OF ALSI *]. As the name Karski ... only appears five times in Domesday Book (here and in 9,53 and as the father of Alsi in S5, and twice in Derbyshire: DBY 1,33. 6,4), it is probable that they were the same individual.
    https://hydra.hull.ac.uk/assets/hull:549/content (Part of the Domesday dataset there: https://hydra.hull.ac.uk/resources/h...sdayDisplaySet.)
    Last edited by Jean M; 08-08-2016 at 11:07 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jean M View Post
    Bede doesn't say that. Shore is misunderstanding the source. Mind you this particular passage in Bede is easily misunderstood! In book five, chapter nine of The Ecclesiastical History, Bede describes the mission of Egbert to the Germans:
    Here's the Latin original from http://www.thelatinlibrary.com/bede/bede5.shtml#9:

    EO tempore uenerabilis et cum omni honorificentia nominandus famulus Christi et sacerdos Ecgberct, quem in Hibernia insula peregrinam ducere uitam pro adipiscenda in caelis patria retulimus, proposuit animo pluribus prodesse; id est inito opere apostolico, uerbum Dei aliquibus earum, quae nondum audierant, gentibus euangelizando committere; quarum in Germania plurimas nouerat esse nationes, a quibus Angli uel Saxones, qui nunc Brittaniam incolunt, genus et originem duxisse noscuntur; unde hactenus a uicina gente Brettonum corrupte Garmani nuncupantur. Sunt autem Fresones, Rugini, Danai, Hunni, Antiqui Saxones, Boructuari; sunt alii perplures hisdem in partibus populi paganis adhuc ritibus seruientes, ad quos uenire praefatus Christi miles circumnauigata Brittania disposuit, siquos forte ex illis ereptos Satanae ad Christum transferre ualeret; uel, si hoc fieri non posset, Romam uenire ad uidenda atque adoranda beatorum apostolorum ac martyrum Christi limina cogitauit.
    So we see that Bede did use the form Rugini, not noted elsewhere, but presumably related to Rugii : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rugii

    Since we don't know Bede's source for the list, it is difficult to get much further with this identification. I see in the Wikipedia entry that some scholars have attempted a link with a Slavic tribe, despite Bede's clear identification of his list as Germanic. So Shore was not the only confused person.
    Last edited by Jean M; 08-08-2016 at 11:31 AM.

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    Is the "rugar/roger" prefix of the name common anywhere else in old English? Or can the name Rugarthorpe be interpreted as "small village of the Rugini"?
    In Normandy we have a "Robertot" ( Robert's farm) and "Rogerville" (Roger's villa), which are both founded in Xth or XIth century. A toponyme "Rogertot" afaik does'nt exist, but could perfectly have existed. In Normandy we have also many weird etymologies ( popular or scholar), in particular for the very numerous scancinavian and anglo-scandinavian places.
    En North alom, de North venom
    En North fum naiz, en North manom

    (Roman de Rou, Wace, 1160-1170)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brent.B View Post
    But I am still curious about the "rugar/roger" part of the name. When I looked up the origin of the name "roger", Wikipedia said that it's origins are French and that it was first introduced to the British Isles by the Normans. Apparently the norse version is Hrošgar?
    Since the name is already Rugartorp in the Domesday Book I would guess that it pre-dates Ilbert de Lacey. So it could be from a Hrošgar. I'm not sure if we have another Hrošgar remembered in a place-name, though there are other Old Scandinavian personal names incorporated into English place-names within the Danelaw area, such as Rolleston in Nottinghamshire and Staffordshire (the latter written Rothulfeston in 941) = "Farmstead of a man called (OScand) Hroaldr". Romanby in North Yorks was written Romundrebi in Domesday Book = "Farmstead of a man called (OScand) Rothmundr".

    There are a number of Roding place-names in Essex derived from Hroth(a), which I assume is the the OE version of Hrošgar. We also have Rothbury, Northumberland = probably "Stronghold of a man called (OE) Hrotha".
    Last edited by Jean M; 08-08-2016 at 01:23 PM.

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    A man called Asi/Esi/Esich was a Carolingian count in the IXth century.

    Another Asi is probably the brother of the count Marcbodo (in Saxony), same period. We can also find some Hrodgar in Saxony at the same time. The Saxons had some connections with Denmark, sometimes family connections.

    No hint for Karski. But if misread, Karl was a Frankish name, so the radical Kar seems Germanic to me, not Slavic.

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