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.

Shrawardine

Parish in the County of Shropshire

Historical Forms

  • Schyrreveswordyn 1339 SRO322/137
  • Saleurdine 1086 DB
  • Serewardin 1272 Ipm
  • Scrawardin 1166 RBE 1195 P
  • Shrawurthin 1240 ib
  • Scrawrthin 1255-6 Ass
  • Schrawardyn 1308 Ipm 1345 SBL3611
  • Shrawardyn 1381,98 Pat 1443 Fine
  • Scrawardyn 1535 VE
  • Shrawardine 1637 PR(L)
  • Screwrdin 1204 P 14th SBL3583
  • Shrewardin' 1215 Cl 1763 PR(StA)
  • Schrewardin 1274 RH
  • Schrewardyn 1284 Cl 1284-5 FA
  • Scawardyn 1320 SBL8396
  • Shawardine 1813 PR(StA)
  • Srawurthin 1212 Fees
  • Sraworthin 1210-12 RBE
  • Srawrðin 1214 P
  • Srathwardin c.1212-17 RBE
  • Sretwrthin, Strawrthin 1255 RH
  • Shretwardyn 1291-2 Ass
  • Strawardyn 1397 Pat
  • Srewardin 1220,50 Fees 1251 Cl
  • Srewardyn 1254 Pat
  • Srewrthin 1255 RH
  • Sreworthin 1271-2 Ass
  • Shewardin 1241 Cl
  • Shewarthyn, Shewurthyn 1255 RH
  • Shrewworthin 1245 Strange
  • Seworthin 1255-6 RH
  • Schyreveworthdin 1292 SAC
  • Schirewordyn 1302 Ipm
  • Scerardin 1302 Ipm
  • Scherwardon 1318 SBL5427
  • Sheraudyn 1397 Pat
  • Sharwardyn 1490 Ipm
  • Shrowardyne 1397 Pat
  • Shrauwurdyn 1398 Pat
  • Shrawardine als Shradon' 1601 SBL12706
  • Shraden 1609 PR(H) 1692 PR(L)
  • Shrarden 1624 PR(L)
  • Shrawden 1633 PR(H)
  • Sraden 1656 PR(StA)
  • Shradden 1780 PR(H)
  • Parva Shretwardyn 1291-2 Ass
  • Little Shrawardine 1684 PR(H)

Etymology

A few eccentric forms which may be suspected of being misreadings have been omitted from the above list of spellings.

Second element worðign, 'enclosed settlement'. The first is uncertain. It is probable that a final consonant has disappeared in the compound with worðign . This could be -f , as assumed by Ekwall in his derivation of Shrawardine from OE  scræf, scref , 'cave, den, hollow'. It could equally well be -w , however. If the qualifying element is scræf , scref , the reference may be to some landscape feature now obscured by Shrawardine Pool. If the lost consonant were -w , the first element would be scrēawa 'shrew'. This is not likely, in a compound with worðign , to be a reference to the animal, but it might have been used as a personal name or nickname.

The earliest forms show the characteristic Norman-French  insertion of a vowel in the simplified initial Sr -, and the Domesday form has the equally characteristic confusion of -r - with -l -. At the end of the 13th cent. there may have been occasional association with sheriff and shire , but as usual there is remarkably little trace of popular etymology. As in other Shropshire names, the short form Shraden , though common in parish registers in the 17th cent., failed to oust the longer form. It is, however, still current locally.

Little Shrawardine, on the opposite bank of the R. Severn, is Parva Shretwardyn 1291-2Ass (p), Little Shrawardine 1684 PR (H) 7. The main settlement is Shraden Magna 1609, Shrawden Magna 1633 PR(H) 6.

Major Settlements