INS
Institute for Name-Studies
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Welcome to the INS

The Institute for Name‑Studies (INS) is the home of research into place‑names and personal names at the University of Nottingham.

The English Place‑Name Society (EPNS) is the established national body for the subject; its offices and library are housed in the Institute.

 

stapleford
 

Overview

The INS was established as an umbrella organisation for the research activities of the EPNS and name-studies scholars at the University of Nottingham.

The INS conducts numerous research projects into the origins and meanings of names and place-names, derived from English, Norse, British Celtic, French, and Latin languages. It also provides high-quality resources for both the study and analysis of place-names, which are used by historians, linguists, and geographers alike.

There are many study opportunities relating to the INS for higher education students of all levels
 

Current Research

Travel and Communication in Anglo-Saxon England

The Travel and Communications project is a three-year interdisciplinary research project funded by the Leverhulme Trust investigating travel and communications in Anglo-Saxon England.

The project, a collaborative venture between the Institute of Archaeology at University College London and the Institute for Name-Studies at the University of Nottingham, runs from November 2014 and teams archaeologists, historians, and place-name scholars.  The project team are working to reconstruct Anglo-Saxon England’s overland route-system (and its intersections with the riverine route-system) using textual, landscape archaeological, and onomastic evidence.

Despite its evident importance for understanding several aspects of Anglo-Saxon society, including warfare, commerce and polity formation and extent, the Anglo-Saxon routeway network has not previously been investigated in detail at the national level. There is therefore much that is uncertain about the routeway network during the period.

It has often been assumed that the Roman road network remained in use throughout the Anglo-Saxon period; consequently, travel in Anglo-Saxon England is often discussed in relation to the Roman road network. However, as the majority of the known Roman roads did not survive into use in the early modern period, it is highly likely that some of these roads went out of use during the Anglo-Saxon period. Conversely, some of the non-Roman roads in use by the early modern period may have come into usage during the Anglo-Saxon period.

By combining archaeological, place-name and charter evidence, the project will shed light on the routeways that were in use during the Anglo-Saxon period. This will be made publicly available in a GIS-generated Online Atlas of the Anglo-Saxon route-system.

 

The Staffordshire Place-Name Project

Work has recently begun to restart the county place-name survey for Staffordshire. The first volume of the English Place-Name Society survey was published in 1984 but its editor, J. P. Oakden, unfortunately passed away before any further volumes were completed.

The INS is now running a volunteer study group, based at the Staffordshire Record Office, which is collecting historic place-name forms from documents held in Stafford.

The project has been running since February 2017, with a regular group of volunteers meeting on a weekly basis at the Staffordshire Record Office. The project was launched with a study day on 4 February, and a second study day is planned in July. Data collected during the project will be used in the completion of the EPNS survey of Staffordshire.

The project has a website, Twitter feed and Facebook page which are regularly updated with news and information.

 

Flood and Flow Project

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Study With Us

Interested in name-studies? The INS at the University of Nottingham is a leading specialist in the study of place-names and personal names.

Students can specialise in name-studies at undergraduate,
masters, and doctoral level

Events

Please visit us again soon for more upcoming events.

News

Last Year

Bringing Vikings Back to the East Midlands

Description
The CSVA receives funding to support a British Museum Vikings exhibition coming to Nottingham in November.

PhD opportunity working with manuscripts and special collections

PhD opportunity working with manuscripts and special collections
Description
New PhD studentship in the Faculty of Arts to study our manuscripts and special collections.

Gelling and Cole photos now available online

Description
Photographs of landscape features taken by Margaret Gelling and Ann Cole are now available online.

AHRC PhD funding application deadline: 16 January 2017

Description
Applications for Midlands3Cities Doctoral Partnership AHRC funding for commencement of PhD study in 2017 are now open. Choose from three workshops in November to assist with your application.

School of English scores 94% in NSS 2016

School of English scores 94% in NSS 2016
Description
The University of Nottingham's results for the 2016 National Student Survey (NSS) are in. The results are the University's best to date and its strongest year-on-year improvement since the NSS began in 2005. School of English scored 94% for 'overall satisfaction'.

New article by Dr John Baker

Description
An article by John Baker, 'Old English s?te and s?tan', has been published in the latest volume of the Journal of the English Place-Name Society. This article surveys the use of these elements, especially in plural compounds, and examines their distribution.

67th International Sachsensymposion

Description
Some of the 'Travel and Communication in Anglo-Saxon England' team will be attending the 67th International Sachsensymposion in Antwerp, Belgium. Andrew Reynolds will be presenting an overview of the Travel and Communication in Anglo-Saxon England project, and Eleanor Rye will be talking about place-name evidence for travel in the early medieval Humber region.

Journal 46 published

Description
The 46th volume of the Journal of the English Place-Name Society is now available, and has been distributed to EPNS members. It contains peer-reviewed articles and reviews of publications which may be of interest to the society's members.

Norfolk Slip Collection Report

Description
Thanks to the kind support of Jim and Mary Ann Wilkes we have been able to undertake research to investigate if the collection of material in the library of the English Place-Name Society relating to Norfolk will support the writing-up of a dictionary of Norfolk place-names. This generous donation has enabled Ellen Fisher to spend a month working through the archive, assessing its scope and coverage, under the supervision of Dr Paul Cavill, and we are delighted to be able to report on the results.

Leeds IMC

Description
The INS had a session at this year's International Medieval Congress, entitled 'Productive Ground: place-names and the landscapes of food provision'. It was chaired by Jayne Carroll and featured papers by Rebecca Gregory, Eleanor Rye and John Baker.
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School of English

The University of Nottingham
Nottingham NG7 2RD

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