English Place-name Society

Survey of English Place-Names

A county-by-county guide to the linguistic origins of England’s place-names – a project of the English Place-Name Society, founded 1923.

Kirk Bramwith

Major Settlement in the Parish of Kirk Bramwith

Historical Forms

  • Branuuat, Branuuet 1086 DB
  • Branwyth 1200 Cur 14 Sawl193
  • Bramwik 1154 Selby
  • Bramwic 1199–1213 ib
  • Bramewich 1169 P
  • Brãwict 1204 ChR
  • Bramwich 1291 Tax
  • Bramwit, Bramwyt 1155–61 YCh481 1252 Ebor
  • Bramwith, Bramwyth l.12 Lewes303 1199 Ch 1232 FF 1201,1230,1251 Testvi 1525
  • Kyrk Bramwyth, Kirke Bramwyth 1341 FF 1502 Ipm 1548 WillY
  • Brampwyth 1316 Vill


This name should be taken with South Bramwith (i, 13supra ), which is on the opposite bank of the Don. There is some hesitation in the earlier spellings between -with (from ON  viðr 'wood') and -wic (from OE  wīc 'dairy farm') and, if the DB spellings of both names are taken into account, OE  wudu 'wood'. This confusion occurs also in Skipwith and some other YE p.ns. (v. YE 263); in view of the greater abundance and antiquity of -wic spellings for Skipwith, OE  wīc would there seem to be original (with ON  viðr as a later replacement), but there is no such certainty with Bramwith. The DB spelling with -uuode (for South Bramwith) points to an original OE  brōm -wudu 'broom wood' with ON  viðr substituted later. The -wic (h ) spellings would then be due to the medieval graphical ambiguity of c and t , and the single -wik could be an early scribal misreading. On Bram - for OE  brōm , v. EPN i, 52 and cf. Phonol. § 29. The church at Kirk Bramwith is frequently mentioned from the thirteenth century (v. kirkja , cf. Kirkhouse Green infra ).