Stream of Consciusness Saturday: Ham

Hmmm… ham…? What about local place names? London has grown steadily outwards over the centuries, enveloping smaller communities and melding them into one large metropolis. Take West Ham and East Ham both here in East London – ‘ham’ is the Anglo-Saxon word for village, so presumably they were originally the East village and the West village in deepest Essex.

Leytonstone where I live was named after the Leyton Stone, an old Roman distance marker placed on an already-ancient pathway going back to pre-historic times. And nearby Stratford was originally ‘street’ and ‘Ford’ – a Roman road by the river crossing. My great-aunt lives in Clapham in South London, originally Clopp Ham, the village by the short hill…

Back home in Scotland, many town names start with ‘Aber’ or ‘Inver’- in Gaelic, Inbhir Nis (Inverness) means the mouth of the River Ness, and Obar Deathain (Aberdeen) means the confluence of the Dee and the Don… OMG what a lot of useless crap I’ve accumulated in my head over the years, that’s enough boring trivia for today…!  🙂

Stream of Consciusness Saturday: Ham


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