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.

Highley Hill

Early-attested site in the Parish of Ashwell

Historical Forms

  • Nylowe 1313 StJohns
  • Nilowe dane 1327 Ct
  • Nylowepathe t.Eliz StJohns
  • Highlow Path c.1840 TA


Highley Hill is Nylowe 1313StJohns , Nilowe dane 1327Ct , Nylowepathe t. ElizStJohns , Highlow Path c. 1840TA . There is a tumulus here and as we are in the midst of an ancient burial ground this is probably a compound of nigon , 'nine' and hlaw , hence 'nine barrows,' with later loss of initial n by a process which is the reverse of the common Hertfordshire addition of initial n . Cf. Introd. xxv.