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.

Mistleberry Wd

Early-attested site in the Parish of Sixpenny Handley

Historical Forms

  • Mistleberry Copse 1811 OS
  • Mistlebury 1841 TA
  • on mealeburg norþewarde 956 ShaftR(S630) 14


Mistleberry Wd (ST 995195), Mistleberry Copse 1811 OS, Mistlebury 1841TA , named from the earthwork (an unfinished hill-fort, v. RCHM 570) on the par. and county bdy referred to in the Anglo-Saxon bounds of Chalke hundred W as (to ) michelan byrg 955 (14) BCS 917(S 582), 'the big fortified place', from micel (wk.obl. -an ) and burh (dat.sg. byr (i )g ), this having given rise to the modern form, perhaps with some late influence from Misselfore 6″ (Misselford 1808) in Bower Chalke par. W 205. The same earthwork seems to be referred to in the Anglo-Saxon bounds of Handley itself as on mealeburg norþewarde 956 (14) ShaftR (S 630), where the first el. is probably mǣle (wk.obl. -an ) 'variegated, multicoloured', cf. Melbury Abbas par. infra (Ekwall DEPN mistakenly includes the form mealeburg under the latter place, but it is some 7 miles W of this point, as noted by Fägersten 27 fn.1). On 1618Map the copse is called Maplebery , a form of the name showing confusion or alternation of the first el. with mapel 'maple-tree'.