Teaching and Workplace Stress LO28845

From: AM de Lange (amdelange@postino.up.ac.za)
Date: 07/16/02

Replying to LO28832 --

Dear Organlearners,

Leo Minnigh <minnigh@dds.nl> writes:

>What I am curious about is the ethymology of 'Moreton'.
>As At does egularly, trying to find the roots of words to
>enrich the meaning of these words, probably thr origin of
>Moreton will help to enrich the images of the past of you
>place. Has it something to do with 'moor' (swamp), or
>mare, and the whole branch of words referring to water?
>There must exist also in England books about the ethymology
>of geographical names. Please, let me know if you know. It
>will enrich my imaginations too - feeling closer to you.

Greetings dear Leo,

Place names have a curious etymology. Place names tend to change slower
than words of ordinary movable things. Thus place names give one a sort of
visit into the past of a language.

I think the name Moreton have two parts:- the stem "More" and the suffix
"-ton". The suffix is derived from an old Saxon ("Nederduitse") word
"tun". (It corresponds to the Dutch and Afrikaans word "tuin".) It was
originally the name for the hedge surrounding a farmhouse. Later it was
used to refer to hedge as well as all the buildings in its inside. Where
several families lived together, it changed into town (small village).

One rule in creating names for places in the Germanic languages is to drop
prepositions. For example, Shouth-of-Hamp-ton will become Southampton.
Hence it is likely that Moreton meant More-of-ton. (more of a small
village). In other words, there could have been another much larger "town"
close by. Perhaps it was Oxford which already was an intelletual centre in
the 13th century.

But one thing hinders me. The word more comes from the Saxon word "maera"
(Dutch and Afrikaans "meer"). Thus one can expect the name to have been
Marton or Merton in ancient times. Perhaps Andrew can check upon this.

You are right Leo -- evolution, metamorphosis, history, etymology or what
ever we may call the change in form of any thing through the course of
time indeed provides a rich picture of such a thing -- the movie!

With care and best wishes


At de Lange <amdelange@postino.up.ac.za> Snailmail: A M de Lange Gold Fields Computer Centre Faculty of Science - University of Pretoria Pretoria 0001 - Rep of South Africa

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