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.

Normancross Hundred

Hundred in the County of Huntingdonshire

Historical Forms

  • Norðmannescros 963 ASC 12th
  • Normannes cros 963–84 BCS c.1200 Thorney Stephen c.1300–25
  • Normanescros 1086 DB
  • Normanecros 1086 DB
  • Normancros Wm2 Thorney c.1300–25 For 1255 Fine 1292
  • Normannecros 1160 P 1227 Ass
  • Normannescros Stephen Ch 1314


Norman Cross stood on Ermine Street where it is crossed by the road from Yaxley to Folksworth. It stands roughly at the centre of the group of parishes which form the Hundred. The name is interesting for it, like that of Toseland Hundred, is clearly of Scandinavian origin. The first element is not the word Norman but the older Norðman applied by the Anglo-Saxons to those Scandinavians who came from Norway, and used also as a pers. name descriptive of some one from that country. It is clear that it is in the latter sense that the word is used here, but who the particular Norðman was who thus gave his name to the cross we do not know. cros is itself a Norse loan-word (v. EPN s. v .), and it is interesting to note that in the only hundred-names in which the meeting-place is, by the very name, indicated as the site of a cross, we have this Scandinavian loanword and not the English rod or mæl , though it is just possible that tree -names which are fairly common as hundred-names may sometimes refer to a cross rather than to a living tree. Other examples of cross in hundred-names are Brothercross and Giltcross in Norfolk and Staincross and Buckrose in Yorkshire.Presumably there was some earlier Anglo-Saxon name for this Hundred, now lost.