Gallatown KDT DSX S NT297941 1 385 70m

Gallowtown 1753 Roy sheet 18, 1
Gallowtown 1775 Ainslie/Fife
W. Gallow Town 1775 Ainslie/Fife [shown at c.NT284940]
Gallowtown 1781 Sasines no. 49
Galaton 1790s OSA, 328
Wester Gallaton 1793 Sasines no. 3709 [‘tenement in Zoar or Wester Gallaton’]
Gallatown 1828 SGF

Sc gallow(s) + Sc toun

‘Gallows farm or settlement’. In OSA (328) Gallatown (Galaton) is mentioned as one of two villages in Dysart parish, the other being Boreland (Borland), which was built for colliers in 1756. Gallatown is older, possibly seventeenth-century, and closely associated with nail-making (Pride 1990, 59). Both traditions recorded in the NSA connect its name with gallows (NSA vol. ix, 139). According to OSA it had 203 inhabitants in 1756 and 432 in 1792 (328).

Zoar, the alternative name for Wester Gallatown in 1793, is from the Old Testament. It is the name of the city into which Lot and his two daughters fled when Sodom was destroyed (e.g. Genesis 19.22 and 23). Compare this to the Old Testament names occurring elsewhere in west Fife, such as Dothan, Sodom, and Gomorrah (all in ADN), q.v.

The above NGR is for the location of Gallatown on SGF (1828), since OS Pathf. Gallatown is a wide area with no clear centre.


This place-name appeared in printed volume 1