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.

Broseley

Parish in the County of Shropshire

Historical Forms

  • Burewardeslega 1177 P
  • Burewordesl' 1195 P
  • Burewordesleg' 1197,8 P
  • Burwardesle 1203-4,1271-2 Ass 1316 FA 1383 Pat
  • Burawardesleia 1205 P
  • Burewardesleg' 1212 P 1242 Fees 1255 RH
  • Burwardeslegh 1229 Pat
  • Burwardesleg' 1271-2 ForProc
  • Burrewardeslee 1291-2 Ass
  • Burwardesleye 1359 Pat
  • Burwardesley 1407,61 Cl
  • Burwardesley alias Broseley 1701 SBL14802
  • Burwarleg' 1177 P
  • Burgardeslege 1194 P
  • Burghwardelee 1291-2 Ass
  • Burghwardesley 1363 Pat
  • Burwardelega Warini 1194 P
  • Burewardele 1228 Pat
  • Burewardel' 1229 Cl
  • Burwardel' 1230 Cur
  • Burewardeleg' 1231 Cur 1261-2 ForProc
  • Burwardelleg' 1255 RH
  • Burwardele 1261 Ipm
  • Burwardleg 1262 Pat
  • Borewardleg' 1230 P
  • Borewardel' 1274 RH
  • Borewardesleg' 1242 Fees
  • Borewardesle(gh') 1271-2 ForProc
  • Borewardesleye 1291-2 Ass 1360,1402 Cl 1418 Fine
  • Borewardusleg' 1274 RH
  • Borwardeslegh' 1291-2 Ass
  • Borewardesley 1310 Ipm
  • Borwardesleie 1319 Ipm
  • Borewardisleye 1331 Pat 1348
  • Borewarsleye l.13th ForProc 1327,8 Pat
  • Barwardesley alias Borsley 1548 Pat
  • Brosley 1535 VE 1625 PR(H) 1706 ib
  • Broseley 1577 Saxton 1675 Ogilby
  • Brooseley 1619 PR(L)
  • Broasley 1699 PR(H)

Etymology

'Woodland clearing of the fort-guardian', second element lēah.

OE  burhweard occurs in a number of place-names, and these are plotted on Fig. 2. In this name and in Burwardsley Ch burhweard is combined with lēah , but more frequently it qualifies a habitative term such as tūn or cot . Burwarton infra is one of the compounds with tūn . If it be accepted that a defence-system from before the time of the Danish wars is represented by the burhtūn , byrhtūn , byrigtūn names, it could be argued that the burhweard names refer to ownership of estates by officials in charge of a number of fortified sites. Burgweard could, on the other hand, be an ordinary OE personal name belonging to a landowner with no special military status or function; but it is noteworthy that 7 out of a corpus of 10 names in which this term occurs are in Cheshire, Shropshire and Herefordshire.

The late appearance (1535, 1548) m the records of a shortened from Brosley , Borsley may be deceptive; spellings like Burwardesley may have continued to be used after a shorter form was current in local speech. Shorter forms are recorded earlier for Burwardsley Ch, which is Borosley 1499, Bursley 1524 (PN Ch 4, 93), and the longer form may have been restored to that name by antiquarian influence. In Broseley there has been metathesis as well as shortening. The long vowel may be a spelling-pronunciation due to the casual insertion of -e -, giving Broseley rather than Brosley .

The Warin whose name is once used as an affix is mentioned freq in the Pipe Rolls.

Places in this Parish

Field