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THERE is little doubt but that Appledore's story goes back a long way into history. Its very existence would appear to be directly due to its geographical position, for, situated as it is at the juncture of the Rivers Taw and Torridge, it lies at a point where ships can safely come to anchor on arrival from sea, or lie safe aground awaiting weather conditions to sail. Even today this has a measure of importance, but in ancient times it was very much more important and shipmasters, seamen and others, realizing this and appreciating the convenience of being near their ships, began to settle on the nearby strand. Thus a settlement grew up and what more natural than that these early folk, who in all probability came from Barnstaple, then the chief sea-port in the district, should have given their new home the name of Tawmutha, literally mouth of the Taw. This is the earliest name we find for the place, and with its variants of Tawmuda, Thomouth (1350), Toumouth (1401) and Tawmouth it seems to have overlapped the somewhat later use of the name Appledore in its various forms.W. G. Hoskins, the eminent Devon historian, says that the name Appledore first occurs in 1335 in the grant of a shop or stall "next the strand ate Apildore." Over the centuries the name has occurred in various forms, such as Apelder (1347), Apuldore (1397), Applethurre (1401), Appelldore (1664), Appledoore (1675) and Apwldwr. Although perhaps lacking authenticity, this latter spelling is a very interesting one in that it gives us the key to the derivation of the name. In origin it would appear to be Celtic and means the settlement by the water pool (cf. modern Welsh "pwll dwr" meaning "pool of water.").
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Book Description North Devon Museum Trust, 1998. Soft cover. Condition: New. New Copy. Seller Inventory # 033712