Old Norse Fótr (m.)

The male name Fótr is the name of a fairly prolific Swedish rune-carver and is found elsewhere in Scandinavia. In England, the name occurs in several place-names in Lincolnshire (Fotherby, Fosdyke and Foston) and possibly in another Foston in Derbyshire. In Fotherby, the place-name preserves the original Old Norse genitive singular ending (ie. as in Fótar). Such clear indications of Old Norse grammar survive relatively rarely in modern forms of place-names. Originally, Fótr was a by-name, meaning ‘foot’.

Old Norse Name


Anglicised Name




Features in Saga

Fótbítr or ‘Foot-Biter’ [sword name] exists in:

‘The saga of the people of the Laxa-dale.’ Laxdœla saga. Eds. Einar Ólafur Sveinsson. Islenzk Fornrit, Vol. 5. (Reykjavík: Hið Isleznka Fornritafélag, 1934.) Chapter 29, 30, 49, 55, 59, 64, 22, and 81.

Laxdæla saga. Trans. Magnus Magnusson and Hermann Pálsson. (London: Penguin Books, 1969.)

Ascribed Culture


Viking Names


male_name, personal-name

Further information


Kenneth Cameron, The Place-Names of Derbyshire III. English Place-Name Society Volume XXIX (1959), p. 560.

Gillian Fellows Jensen, Scandinavian Personal Names in Lincolnshire and Yorkshire. Copenhagen: Akademisk Forlag (1968), p. 85.

Kenneth Cameron, A Dictionary of Lincolnshire Place-Names. Nottingham: English Place-Name Society (1998), pp. 45-46.