© www.dover-kent.co.uk 2000 - 2016 
Home History Defence Transport Leisure Places People Words Information Contact
Dover: Lock and Key of the Kingdom

The Origins of Dover’s Name

The name of town of Dover and that of the river Dour share  the same origin. The Ancient British word dubra meant 'the  waters'. This name was taken up by the Romans who called their  settlement Dubris. By AD 696 the name was recorded as  Dofras and about AD 1000 it was Doferum.   About 1040 the land surrounding the river is described as  Doferware broc: marshy land (broc - Old English) belonging  to the Doferware, or people of Dover.
The town and river seem to have shared the name at one time and developed separate identities as the names have changed over the  centuries. The river Dour is first recorded in its present form in 1577. In 1610 the town of Dover is recorded as Douer and passed  through other various spellings such as Dovor and Dower before settling down to its present spelling in the 19th century. Other place name origins in Dover:   Buckland - Land granted by deed or charter - Old English bocland. Charlton - The farmstead of the churls (peasants) - Old English ceorla tun. Crabble - Crab hole, a hole in which crabs are found - Old English crabba hol. Kearsney - A place where cress grows - Old French cressonniere.