Lookout, lookout!

Last night D decided to look up my name, Eryl, can’t remember why, but the first thing that came up was a hotel in Bangor called Eryl y Mor and this made him look up what Eryl means.

Which led to a million baby naming sites, most of which gave different meanings. The first said my name means ‘a place where you go for knowledge’ which, of course, I rather like. However, that would appear to be a mistranslation from the Welsh. Eryl actually means lookout, view, watcher and variations on that theme. So the name of that hotel in Bangor translates to Sea View.

Which would be disappointing if it weren’t for the fact that my childhood home was 16 Seaview Road! And that pretty much my favourite activity is walking along the tops of sea cliffs. If I win the lottery while I can still walk, one of the first things I’ll do is buy a house overlooking the sea. Such coincidences are almost too delightful. Though I realise the ‘sea’ part of the hotel’s name has nothing to do with my name, I’m relishing the association.

The first instance of a baby being named Eryl was in 1893, when John and Dilys Glynne Jones named their daughter after the house, Eryl-y-Mor, they lived in (source). Not sure if that’s the same house that’s now a hotel, or if it’s in Bangor, but John and Dilys must have been an interesting couple.

The only other person I’ve ever met with my name was my MEP when I lived in Bedford, twenty six years ago, and that was briefly. This doesn’t mean I ever get to choose it as my username on any apps or websites, some other Eryl has always got there first. Where are these other Eryl’s? Even in Wales when someone asks my name and I tell them they’ve invariably never heard it. I’ve even been told, and in a faintly hostile manner, that it is most certainly not Welsh and I am a liar, really!

So it’s been nice to find out a bit about it, not sure why I never thought to look myself. Next time someone challenges me on its provenance I’ll direct them to Bangor 🙃

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