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.

Bellows Cross

Early-attested site in the Parish of Cranborne

Historical Forms

  • Bellyes Crosse 1621 CH
  • Belleye 1382 Cecil
  • Belly(e) (Home Close) e17 CecilMap
  • Bellyes 1621 CH
  • duos campos vocat' belstreete 1623 CH


Bellows Cross (SU 066139), 1846TA , Bellyes Crosse 1621CH , named from Belleye 1382Cecil , Belly (e ) (Home Close )e17CecilMap , Bellyes 1621CH , cf. Belly Lane 1619ib , Bellow (s ) Cross Fd & Bellow (s ) Pce 1846TA . Belleye may be from belle 'bell-shaped hill' and lēah 'wood, clearing in a wood'; bēl 1 (Angl), bǣl (WSax) 'fire, pyre' is a less likely first el. in view of the absence of forms with -a - which would probably have arisen from shortening of WSax  bǣl in the cpd; Cross is probably cross 'cross-roads' with reference to the five lane junction here. The form duos campos vocat ' belstreete 1623CH should perhaps also be associated with this name, if the 'street' is that entering Cranborne from Damerham Ha.