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.


Early-attested site in the Parish of Colchester

Historical Forms

  • (æt) Læxadyne c.1000 ASWills 11th
  • Lessendena, lex sendena 1086 DB
  • Lexeden(e) 1119 Colch 1234–57 FF
  • Lexedenn 1328 Cl
  • Lexden 1373 IpmR 1594 N
  • Lexten 1586 WigboroughPR
  • Lexenden(e) 1233 Bracton 1243–8 ADi 1303 FA 1323 For
  • Lexendon 1234 FF
  • Lexonden 1273 Ipm
  • Lexinden 13th WalthamA
  • Laxden 1412 FA
  • Laxden otherwise Lexden 1527 Lancs


For further forms v. Lexden Hundred supra 359. The later forms show that the spelling dyne can only be an inverted one for dene , in a district where OE y regularly appears in LOE and EModE as e , and the second element must be denu .

The first element is difficult. For Laxton (PN Nth 168), as for Laxton (Nt, ERY), a pers. name Lax of Scandinavian origin has been suggested, but the locality is against a Scandinavian pers. name in Lexden. It may be that OE  leax itself gave rise to a pers. name Leaxa . Cf. to leaxanoc BCS 775.