Etymology Map Of London Place Names

By M@ Last edited 26 months ago

Last Updated 23 May 2022

Etymology Map Of London Place Names
Click or tap for larger image.

How did your bit of London get its name? We've made a map.

We've published a fair few pieces on London etymology over the years, from the map of Anglo-Saxon London, to the medieval tube map, through to detailed pieces on every tube station name.

High time we threw it all together into one master-map. This shows significant places from all over Greater London, represented to show how they got their names. Enjoy.

A note on inclusions

We've tried to include every major settlement in Greater London, though inevitably, we'll have missed a few. It's intended that the map will evolve and improve, based on reader feedback (see below).

Etymology can be a game of probabilities. Many place names were shaped so long ago that nobody can be certain if any one explanation is correct. Croydon, for example, is usually said to get its name from 'valley of crocuses', but other suggested derivations include 'settlement near fresh water', 'crooked valley' or 'chalk hill'.  For that reason, the labels we've put on the map are not universally accepted, and are open to debate.

If you'd like to make a suggestion regarding the map, be it a new addition or an alteration to an existing location, please contact Matt Brown on [email protected].