Leicester, Leicestershire

Leicester is one of the Five Boroughs of the Danelaw. The first element of the place-name probably comes from a tribal name derived from the pre-English river-name Legra which would have been given in Old English as Legor or Ligor. This river-name is likely identical or related to the River Loire in France. The second element of the name is Old English ceaster ‘a city; an old fortification; a Roman site’. Thus the place-name gives the sense of ‘the fortified Roman town of the folk called Legore (or Ligore)’.

Ascribed Culture


Viking Names


Leicester, Leicestershire, place-name

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Image © Stephen Sweeney, via Geograph, CC BY-SA 2.0

Image © Ian Taylor, via Geograph, CC BY-SA 2.0


Barrie Cox, The Place-Names of Leicestershire. Part One: The Borough of Leicester. English Place-Name Society Volume LXXV (1998), pp. 1-4.