Cameron MAI S NT347993 1 385 40m

(David of Wemyss lord of) Cambrune c.1250 St A. Lib. 399
? (Sir John of) Cambrun 1260 St A. Lib. 346 [one of those acting for the earl of Buchan justiciar of Scotia in the case of Falletauch of Drumcarro CMN. It is just as likely, however, that Sir John held Cameron CMN rather than Cameron MAI]
Superiori Cambrun c.1290 Fraser, Wemyss ii no. 2 [Upper Cameron, granted to John of Wemyss and his wife, Amabilla, by Amabilla’s father, John of Ainslie (Anesley), a Roxburgh laird][219]
communa de Inferiori Cambrun c.1290 Fraser, Wemyss ii no. 2 [common grazing of Nether Cameron, granted to John of Wemyss, as in preceding entry]
Cambrun 1294 PRO E101/331/1 [o.c.; printed Camberone in Stevenson, Documents i, 417; see MAI Introduction]
Nethircameroune 1393 RMS i no. 870 [to John of Wemyss]
in territorio de Cambron 1421 Laing Chrs. no. 99 [charter by Murdoch duke of Albany to Henry Gall anent 33 acres of land commonly called the Maw (Maw) in the territory of Cameron (Cambron)]
terre de Cameroun 1451 RMS ii no. 458 [lands of Cameron and Ballenkirk KWY set in feu to Robert Hunter; see also ER v, 474]
de firmis de Cameroun 1451 ER v, 469 [‘from the fermes’]
de firmis terre de Camroune 1454 ER v, 684 [‘from the fermes of the land of’]
(lands of) Cameron 1466 RMS ii no. 865 [Archibald Hunter son of Robert Hunter, the lands of Cameron and Ballenkirk KWY]
Cammeroun-Mylne 1468 RMS ii no. 958 [John Wemyss, ... lands of Tullybreck (Tulibrek) MAI, Little Lun (Litil-lon) MAI, Cameron Mill, Haugh (le Halch-wemis) SCO ...]
(lands of) Camroun 1510 RMS ii no. 3429 [John Abercrombie (Abircrumby)]
Cameroun-Myln 1511 RMS ii no. 3636
Camroun-Mylne 1530 RMS iii no. 953
(astrict multures of) Chamroun 1541 RMS iii no. 2473 [see Balbriekie KWY]
Camrounmylne 1610 Retours (Fife) no. 210
? Canno 1654 Blaeu (Pont) East Fife
Cameron 1654 Blaeu (Gordon) Fife
Cameron mill 1654 Blaeu (Gordon) Fife [shown on north side of River Leven, near OS Pathf. Cameron Bridge]
Camron K<irk> 1684 Adair/East Fife
Cameron 1775 Ainslie/Fife
Cameron 1856 OS 6 inch 1st edn

G cam or Pictish * cam + ? Pictish *brun or * bren

? ‘Crooked hill’. The first element is G cam, or its Pictish cognate *cam (compare Welsh cam) ‘crooked, bent’. Whether it is Gaelic or Pictish depends on how the second element is interpreted. The underlying form would appear to be *brun, which, in respect of Cameron MLO (Cambrun 1264 × 1288), Norman Dixon would derive from an otherwise unrecorded G *brun ‘hill’ cognate with Welsh bryn (1947, 238, 337). Since Cameron MLO (now a southern suburb of Edinburgh) is in British-speaking territory, it is more likely that it is in fact a British place-name. Cameron MAI (as well as Cameron CMN, with similar early forms) would then be its Pictish equivalent. There is, however, some evidence that the Pictish cognate of Welsh bryn was realised as *bren (see Burnturk KTT and Newburn NBN). Both *bren and *brun could be the same word, showing vowel variation, the latter perhaps influenced by OIr brú (acc. broinn, gen. bronn), ‘belly’, referring to a rounded hill. A similar confusion is found in Cornish between *bren ‘hill’ (cognate with Welsh bryn) and bron ‘breast, hill’ (Padel 1985, 31, 32). Camborne in Cornwall (Camberon 1182, Cambron c.1230), is analysed as cam(m) + bron(n) ‘crooked hill’ (Padel 1988, 63).

    The later development, both written and spoken, of all three place-names in Scotland was no doubt influenced by the common personal name Cameron (from G cam-shròn ‘crooked nose’). This latter (as a by-name) probably attaches to Alwin Cameron (Alwinus Cambrun’), of one of the men of Dunfermline Abbey, son of William Fleming of *Fleming-Beath DFL. However, Alwin’s strong Markinch connections leave open the possibility that his by-name derives from this place, since he died at Tullibreck MAI and was buried in Markinch cemetery, probably around the middle of the thirteenth century (Dunf. Reg. no. 326; see MAI Introduction, Cemetery, and PNF 5 Appendix 1, for more details).


This place-name appeared in printed volume 2