The first element of Bretby, in the Repton and Gresley Hundred of Derbyshire, comes from either the Old Norse ethnonym Bretar ‘Britons’ or its Old English cognate, Brettas. The second element of the place-name is Old Norse bý ‘a farmstead, a village’.
Traditionally, the place-name has been interpreted as referring to Britons who accompanied the Scandinavians in their settlements. However, the exact implications of such a name are not yet fully understood and are the subject of ongoing work by Dr Jayne Carroll of the Institute for Name-Studies, University of Nottingham.
- Viking Names
- Derbyshire, ethnonym, place-name
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Find out about Bretby, Derbyshire.
Jayne Carroll, forthcoming.
Kenneth Cameron, The Place-Names of Derbyshire III. English Place-Name Society Volume XXIX (1959), p. 623.