Litana

Attested:  RC Litana

Where:  On the Antonine Wall, possibly Balmuildy fort, at NS58117169, by the river Kelvin on the outskirts of Glasgow.

Name Origin:  All the Celtic languages have words close to litana meaning ‘broad, wide’, from PIE *plat- ‘flat, wide, spread out’, with the classic Celtic loss of P.  Greek has λιτανα ‘someone praying’, of uncertain origin.  Neither seems particularly appropriate to fort number 8 out of 10 (counting from the east) in RC’s list.  Other parallels, such as Lithuania or the litana silva battlefield are no better.  But λιθαξ ‘stony’ or λιθινος ‘made of stone’, would fit Balmuildy as the only large fort on the Antonine Wall fort with an early stone wall.

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Last Edited: 25 May 2016