Attested: Ptolemy 2,3,2 Τοισοβιος ποταμου εκβολαι
Where: Mouth of the river Clwyd, which reaches the sea at about SH994807, between Rhyl and Towyn, in north Wales, compatible with Ptolemy's coordinates.
Name origin: The τοισ- part most likely came from PIE *teus- ‘empty’ while the –οβιος ending probably meant ‘river, water’ as discussed here. *teus- seems not to have modern descendants in English or Welsh, but is well represented in other languages, such as Russian тощий. That meaning may have been preserved in the modern place name Dyserth, which is Welsh for ‘deserted, desolate’, a loan-word from Latin desertum. Presumably this means the banks of the Clwyd estuary downstream of St Asaph Varis were an undesirable place to live in Roman times.
Notes: The alternative candidate river mouth, of the Conwy, near Llandudno, has a valid alternative name in Canovium.
Last Edited: 10 October 2016