On 2006-04-19 11:09, tgpedersen wrote:
> Are you positive? That means 'Bremen' makes no sense.
I haven't said anything about the etymology of <Bremen>.
> I've never seen the Warta. It must be a wondrous sight.
I don't understand your point.
>>> So now we know why it's called Bremen and Birmingham. Or?
>> Birmingham < Bermingeham < OE *Beor(n)m(und)inga ha:m, as Brian has
>> already pointed out.
> Personally, I never point out stuff that involves an asterix. I only
> suggest it.
Sometimes the asterisk is just a formality. It isn't my fault that
<Bermingeham> is first documented in the Domesday Book. The structure of
the name is perfectly clear. The personal name Beorma is attested in OE,
though it may be difficult to identify with certainty the full form for
which the diminutive stands (it could be Beornmund, Beornmo:d, perhaps
even Beorhtmund etc.), just as it's a matter of guessing whether a
particular occurrence of <Bertie> in Modern English stands for <Albert>,
<Bertrand>, <Gilbert>, <Herbert> etc. This uncertainty in no way weakens
the etymology. As in Modern English, the diminutive could be used to the
exclusion of the full name.
>> The -ingham placenames in England are all based
>> on personal names.
> As opposed to the ing(en) names elsewhere?
One particularly archaic (and well-studied) type of placename in England
is the "Hastings" type (OE -ingas). They are formally plural clanal
names derived from the names of their real or mythical ancestors. The
suffix <-ing> functions here like a patronymic element, cf. its use in
names of Anglo-Saxon royal lineages, such as the Oiscingas (the house of
Oisc, the eponymic founder of the Kentish dynasty). The same clanal
names can be used in the "-ingham, -ingley, -ington, ..." type. Here we
have the gen.pl. of the <-ing> formation (OE -inga) followed by a noun
such a <ha:m> 'homestead, farm', <leah> 'meadow, untilled land', <tu:n>
'enclosure', etc. <Hæstingas> and <Hæstinga ceaster> were used