Almost sorry I asked - didn't mean to cut into your work time to such an extent - I will keep your excellent info for reference in case any one asks me the same question but like you I better stick to English - indeed for me , there is no other way. Neil
Niven Sinclair wrote:
Following on Neil's request about the meaning of the prefix "Auch" which
appears in many of the place-names of Scotland, I have asked around and
been given the information below:
Auchnacloich = stone field Auchleeks = flagstone field Auchnafree = field of the dee forest Auchnaguie = field of the wind Auchessan = field of the little waterfall Auchgobbal = field of the fork Aucharn = cairn field
so, from the above, we can conclude that 'auch' means a field i.e. until
we come to:
Auchtermuchty = upland area of the burn* which name might have included 'muc' which is Gaelic for 'pig' Auchtertool = upland + burn name (Teil) Auchtermoonzie = upland + burn name (Moonzie) Auchterstruthers = upland between the burns Struthers was once Uchteruthirstruthire which is uachdar eadar strutha - which is the Gaelic for 'upland between the burns'
burn = small brook or stream
It would appear that the 'confusion' between the 'field' translation and the 'upland' translation
arises from the similarity in Gaelic between achadh for 'field' and auchdar for 'upland'.
I hope this has confused everyone as much as it has confused me and made me eternally grateful
that the English gave us the English language which allows us to converse with our fellow-men (and
women) almost anywhere in the World.
Incidentally, the Sinclairs* never spoke Gaelic as their mother tongue. True many of them 'acquired'
Gaelic just as they would have acquired any other language to facilitate their daily business.
* this would not apply to the Sinclairs of Argyll.