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Carnspindle, County Antrim


perhaps Ir. Carn ‘cairn’ + E. Spindle


The first element in this townland name is carn ‘a heap, a cairn, a pile of stones’ (Dinneen). The element carn often makes reference to a stone-built mound, especially a burial monument (HDGP, 60). 

The element spíon ‘a thorn, a spiny or thorny shrub’ (Dinneen) is possible, however there is no obvious derivational suffix that would be expect to appear as -dle.

Spinéal ‘spinel’ is a gemstone but is not present in Ireland and is unlikely to appear in a place-name.

Carnspindle is the location of one of only two small corn mills in the parish which were propelled by water power in the form of a water wheel (OSM 10, 22-23). The second element in Carnspindle might then be the English element spindle in the mechanical sense of a rotating axis, in reference to the corn mill mentioned in the Ordnance Survey Memoirs.



Additional Information

Historical name form

Old FormRef. DateReference
Ramphinell1659cCensus 1659 9
Carnsprinell1669HMR Ant. 43
Carnspindle1780Lendrick Map
Carn Spinnil ""Cairn of the Sandbank""1934Magill's Antrim 76
Carn ""a heap"A17 A198J O'D (OSNB)
Belfast Lower
Island Magee
Parish in 1851
Island Magee
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Place name type