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.


Major Settlement in the Parish of Huggate

Historical Forms

  • Hughete 1086 DB
  • Hugete 1200 Cur
  • Hugeth t.Hy2 MaryH 1156–7 YCh354
  • Hugaht 1156 YCh186
  • Hugat 12th Warter 1145–6 LeonardR t.Hy2 Gilbert 1154–63 YCh158 1347 FF
  • Hugate 12th,13th LeonardR 1493 Test
  • Hogate 1221–35,c.1400 Melsa 1302 Ebor
  • Heugate 1285 KI
  • Hougat(e) 1301 Pat 1333 YAJxi
  • Howgate 1406 BM
  • Howgate in le Wold, Howgate on the Wold 1511,1538 FF
  • Hugatte 1423 YD 1538 FF
  • Hugget(t) 1542 NCWills 1582 FF


The second element of this difficult name would appear to be OScand  gata 'road,' used here of the ancient highway to York (York Lane infra 174), though the few earliest spellings with -gete , etc., may indicate some confusion with OE  geat 'gate,' sometimes used in place-names in the sense 'pass,' though on topographical grounds that is improbable in Huggate. The first element presents more difficulty still. We might think of OE  hoh 'spur of land, the end of a ridge' and this would be appropriate to the situation of the road; comparison with other names which contain this element like Huby (PN NRY 18) and the numerous Huttons (as Hutton Cranswick supra 156), however, makes this improbable, for the normal ME  spelling of hoh in compounds is Ho -, whilst Hu - is of comparatively late appearance. From this it is clear that the first element in Huggate has an original -u - and the element itself would be Hu -, Hug - or the like. Huby (WRY), Huby 1198 Fount, 13th Fontet passim to 1520 FF, Hugby c. 1260–70Bodl , Hugheby 13th Font (p), Hueby 1279–81 QW, Hewby 1569 FF, may contain the same word. Another possibility is an OScand  *hugr related to OScand  haugr 'mound.' This word is not recorded in independent use, but it may enter into OScand  Hugastrond (Sverris Saga , cf. Heggstad s.v.), a mutated form occurs in the Norw place-name Høgi , earlier Hyghinni (Rygh, NoGN xii, 32) and a derivative *hugul , corresponding to German hügel 'mound,' in Norwegian Hugl (NoGN xi, 84), and in the OSwed place-name Thorshughle (cf. Hellquist, ON på -by 8 n.). Huby would be parallel in meaning to Swed  Högby (Hellquist, loc. cit .), 'farmstead near the mound or hill.' Huggate would mean 'road to the mound(s).' There are many tumuli on Huggate Wold and by Huggate Dikes, and York Lane leads from the village in the direction of these mounds.v. Addenda lx.