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.

Gallica Bridge

Early-attested site in the Parish of Ryme Intrinseca

Historical Forms

  • Galliger Bridge 1765 Tayl
  • Gall Acre [Bridge] 1795 Boswell
  • Lytell Gallow(e)acre, Lytle Gallow(e)acre 1563 Glyn
  • Gallow(e) Aker 1599 Glyn
  • Galloweacre Wood(e), Gallowaker Wood(e) 1563,1599 Glyn
  • Gallo(w)acre Wo(o)dd 1599 Glyn
  • Gallacre, Gallaker 1563,1599 Glyn 1611 DuCo 1623 Ct
  • Gallaker Cops 1650 ParlSurv
  • Gallaker Wood, Gallager Copps 1599 Glyn
  • dua prati voc' Galacres 1618 Ct
  • Boarden Bridge 1811 OS
  • Gallaker River 1623 Ct


Gallica Bridge (ST 572101), Galliger Bridge 1765 Tayl, Gall Acre [Bridge]1795 Boswell, named from Lytell Gallow (e )acre , Lytle Gallow (e )acre 1563Glyn , Gallow (e ) Aker 1599Glyn , Galloweacre Wood (e ), Gallowaker Wood (e )1563, 1599Glyn , Gallo (w )acre Wo (o )dd 1599Glyn ; Gallacre , Gallaker 1563, 1599Glyn , 1611DuCo , 1623Ct , Gallaker Cops 1650ParlSurv , Gallaker Wood , Gallager Copps 1599Glyn , dua prati voc ' Galacres 1618Ct . This is 'gallows acre', that is 'plot of arable or cultivated land near the site of a gallows', v. galga , æcer . The bridge (Boarden Bridge 1811 OS, from borden 'made of boards or planks') is where the Dorchester-Ilchester Roman road crosses the stream (R. Elsford) forming the Do-So county bdy: the stream is in fact called Gallaker River 1623Ct . The recent Latinate rationalization to Gallica (from Gallacre ) is to be noted, cf. the comment in Good that 'it is at least a remarkable coincidence that a bridge, on an admittedly Roman road, should have a name so familiar in the Latin tongue, unless its origins do indeed go back to that remote time' (The Old Roads of Dorset 28).