Croft Outerly

Croft Outerly LSL S NO247018 1 373 125m

Croft Outerly 1856 OS 6 inch 1st edn

This is a puzzling name, both in its word order and in its second element. To take the word order first, it belongs to a small group of Sc names in which the usual Sc order of specific followed by generic is reversed. In putting the generic first, it is more like a Gaelic or French name. Remarkably, this occurs several times with the Sc element croft e.g. Croftgary ABO and in the common Croftangry, found at least five times in Fife (see croftangry in Elements Glossary, PNF 5).

    The second element would seem to be a variant of Sc utterly, a rare word applied to a wind to mean ‘blowing outwards or off-shore’ (DOST). Applied to a place, it probably has the meaning of ‘outside, lying at the edge’, which still describes Croft Outerly’s situation in relation to the old town of Leslie. It is described in OS Name Book (91, 22) as ‘a number of cottages with gardens attached on the North side of Leslie, the property of a number of persons’.

This place-name appeared in printed volume 2