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La rivière Avon


page ouverte le 29.09.2006       forum de discussion

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dernière mise à jour 30/09/2008 14:02:58

Définition : rivière de Grande Bretagne, qui prend sa source en ***, dans *** entre ***, et ***. Elle traverse l*** puis arrose *** après un parcours de *** km environ.


* M.N Bouillet (1863) : 


* Rivet & Smith, p. 239 : 

ABONA (river, Gloucestershire). voir n° 5 sur la carte ci-contre.


- Ravenna 10827 (= R&C 242) : ABONA

- Ravenna 10914 (=R&C 286) : ELAVIANA

Ravenna's first mention, in its river-list, is straightforward. The second, to be amended Fl Aviana (see ELAVIANA entry in this List), is in the section of diverse insule, but like other names in this group is really that of a river which - having been written ' in the sea' on a map - was taken by the Cosmographer to be an island. The name could be that of the Anava of Dumfries, but this is already in Ravenna at 108,31. It is hardly that of the Lanarkshire Avon Water, for this was an inland river. The best probability is that the entry is a garbled version of Fl Avona, well within Ravenna's range of miscopying; and that since in the list it is immediately followed by Sobrica which we take to be Sabrina (the Severn), it is likely to be the Bristol Avon. That this is already present in the Cosmography as Abona is no objection; the compiler drew names for rivers from at least two maps, one of which gave the simple name, the other (or another) of which used Fl - for flumen - at least occasionally.

DERIVATION. For *ab-, see ABISSUM. The name derives from British *abona 'river', to which correspond Welsh afon, Breton aven, Cornish avon; Old Irish abann and Irish abhann, abhainn ('owen).

All mean 'river'. The same Celtic bases underlie the common British river-name Avon (see the map), on which see Ekwall ERN s.v. and Jackson LHEB 272 & 558, and several Irish rivers called Avonmore, Owenmore (e.g. the Blackwater of Co. Cork, < abhainn-mor 'great river'). Both *Abona and *Abono- existed as river-names in Gaul, though little mentioned in the classical sources. The Abona of Ravenna 79,35 in Portugal is more correctly Aquabona of AI 416,5.

The name has *-ona suffix, as in British Devona and tnany Continental river-names; see C. Watkins in Ériu, XXIV (1973), 80-89.

IDENTIFICATIOn : The river Avon, Gloucestershire.

Bibliographie :

* M.N Bouillet : Dictionnaire Universel d'histoire et de géographie. Hachette. 1863.

* A.L.F Rivet & Colin Smith : The Place-Names of Roman Britain. B.T Batsford Ltd. London. 1979. Edition 1982.

* Autres pages internet traitant de la rivière Avon / Abona

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