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derniere mise à jour 26/03/2009 13:26:27

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Definition : rivière de (G)Bretagne; Angleterre; Northumberland.


jean-claude Even



Etude etymologique

* Rivet & Smith, Place-Names of Roman Britain, p 311.

- Ravenna, 10745 : COCCIMEDA; variante COCUNEDA; COCENNEDA;

Lecture par R & C : COCCUVEDA; variantes COCCIMEDA, 10838 ( R & C 264 : COGUVEUSURON)

These sources need discussion. In Ravenna 107,45 R&C's decipherment of scripts seems preferable to that of Schnetz (which we normally follow); there is agreement about the first element, but Schnetz's main reading leaves us with -meda as second element, and this, though a well-known word in many languages (including Celtic, = 'mead', the drink), is an unlikely place-name element. Ravenna's Coguveusuron is in the list of rivers; R&C rightly thought it looked like a conflation, but did not attempt to solve the riddle. The second part - say USURON - is probably for the town Isurium, for which see our entry. The first part, COGUVE, strongly suggests COCCUVEDA; we have to assume at some stage a reduction of -cc- to -c- (Ravenna is much given to simplifying geminated consonants), then g written for c (as is common), and omission of two final letters. The conflation would have arisen from misreading tightly-packed lettering on a map.

DERIVATION. Ravenna thus cites what appears to be a habitation-name at 107,45 and a river at 108,38, both called Coccuveda. This is by no means impossible, but it seems likely that at 107,45 the Cosmographer, reading from a map, mistook a river-name on his map for a habitation-name, as we can be certain he did elsewhere (the most glaring case is Tamese at 106,38); from another map he then again read the same name, this time correctly as a river, at io838 (but conflating it with an adjacent name). It is best to conclude, then, that we are dealing with one river-name, Coccuveda. The point is important in determining the meaning. Williams, not thinking of a river, gave the root as *cocco- ' red ' (see the previous name) plus -veda, which represented a root as in Welsh -wedd, either 'slope' as in llechwedd or as in cochwedd 'red appearance'. For a river-name we can now affirm that only the second of these is applicable; indeed R&C observe of the Coquet that it is ' filled with red porphyritic detritus from the Cheviot ' (in which case, compare Rio Tinto and Rubricatum > Llobregat river of Catalonia, etc.).

IDENTIFICATION. The river Coquet, Northumberland.


Discussion : Rivet & Smith, sans s'affirmer sur l'étymologie, rejoignent les propos selon lesquels la rivière Coquet est ' pleine de détritus porphyriques rouges provenant des collines des Cheviot". Ils proposent de comparer avec le Rio Tinto et le Rubricatum > la riviere Llobregat de Catalogne, etc.


Bibliographie; sources; envois

* Rivet & Smith, Place-Names of Roman Britain. 


Liens électroniques des sites Internet traitant de la rivière Coquet :  

* forum du site Marikavel : Academia Celtica

hast buan, ma mignonig vas vite, mon petit ami

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