In 5th to 9th century Britain surely every settlement was by definition 'a place where something was made' be it metalwork, ceramic, textile, bone tools, coinage, straw hats, fishing nets, fish hooks, salt, milk, cheese, bread, illuminated manuscripts, weapons, buckets, houses, pointed sticks, ice skates, amber jewellry, roof tiles, tin trays, loom weights, mirrors, glassware etc etc. We are discussing an iron age (note lower case) agricultural/semi-industrial society. But not every 5th to 9th century placename is a -wich, -vic or -wick.
I am personally quite happy to accept that -wich, -vic, and -wick place names could have a multiplicity of origins, but it is probably only archaeology (at the end of the day), that will demonstrate whether such settlements were newly founded in the 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th or 9th centuries, refounded on settlements of Roman origin or were continuously occupied over a longer period of time, and what 'activity', may or may not have taken place in that settlement at different times.
'Ekwall' is a fine book, but it is at the end of the day largely speculative, based upon one persons interpretation of the origins of place names during a period when precise contemporary documentary evidence of such origins is scarce. Like many history/archaeology books written over 60 years ago, it needs to be assessed in the context of subsequent research.
Bea Hopkinson <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
There have been many discussions on the subect of 'wic' and it is
widely accept that it has the meaning of a place where something was
made: salt making, i.e. Saltwic or Sealtwic, being one of them, etc.
>kevin wooldridge wrote:
>> But couldn't 'wic' also come from the Scandinavian denoting 'a
>> settlement at the end of a long inlet' (hence the later wic-ings or
>> vikings). Surely, a settlement at the end of a long inlet perfectly
>> describes Hamwic, Londonwic, Ipswich, Norwich
>No - definitely not. ON 'vik' is rare in English place-names.
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