Dingle Brae

Place-name:Dingle Brae
Suggested Meaning:brow of the hill at the hollow
1st element:Scots dingle ‘hollow;
2nd element:Scots brae ‘brow a hill, hillside’
Blaeu Coila (1654):No Entry
OS Name Books (1855-57):Dingle Brae
Location:Ordnance Survey (1894)

Dingle Brae

Blackcraig Farm (Robert Guthrie 2007)

The Ordnance Survey Name Book (1855-57) entry for Dingle Brae reads –

An eminence immediately north of Blackcraig

Map 1: Dingle Brae (OS Map 1857) : Reproduced with the Permission of the National Library of Scotland

Dingle Brae

1st element: dingle ‘A small, narrow or enclosed, usually wooded valley’

A search through Scotland’s Places reveals two other Dingle place-names, namely Dingle Bog (Renfrewshire) and Dingle Burn (Lanarkshire). However, references to a dingle appear in the notes of several other records Scotland’s Places that contain the place-name element den, e.g. Den of Kildrum, Darden Den, Clunie Den and Den of Woodtown, while some contain the additional note – den ‘a hollow, a dingle’ [ Jamieson’s Scots Dictionary] which compares well with the defintion given in the Scots Dictionary den ‘a hollow between hills; a dingle’ [1]

The hollow in question lies between Dingle Brae and Berry Hill while at the head of the hollow sits Laglass Hill. Michael Ansell identified Laglass Hill as Gaelic An Lag Glas ‘the green/grey hollow’ and considered it ‘may have orginally referred to the boggy area of Star Bog [2]’, but perhaps the hollow at the foot of Dingle Brae is a more likely alternative [3].

Map 2 site of dingle ‘hollow’ (OS Map 1895) | Reproduced with the Permission of the National Library of Scotland

See the link to Map 3 below for the Background Map LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging).

Dingle Brae |Robert Guthrie (2022)

1.Dingle Brae 2. Berry Hill 3. Laglass Hill 4. Blackcraig Hill 5. Ern Cleuch 6. Lochbrowan Hill

It is also interesting to note the etymology of dingle [4] which may also give some insight to the origins of the local place-name The Dungeon – a named glen on the Connel Burn [5].

From Middle English dingle (“a deep hollow; dell”), from Old English *dyngel, a diminutive of Old English ding, dung (“dungeon; pit”), equivalent to dung +‎ -le.

Wiktionary [Aug 2022]
2nd element: Scots brae ‘brow of a hill, hillside’

The Scots brae ‘brow of a hill’ [6] is the south facing slope of the ‘eminence north of Blackcraig‘ rising fromm the hollow or dingle below giving rise to the name Dingle Brae.


[1] Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. |den
[2] Michael Ansell, New Cumnock News, Spring 2021 , Issue 8
[3] New Cumnock Place-Name | Laglass Hill – in progress
[4] Wiktionary On-line Dictionary | dingle
[5] New Cumnock Place-Name | The Dungeon – in progress
[6] Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. |brae

Reproduced with the Permission of National Library of Scotland
Map 1: Ordnance Survey Maps – Six-inch 1st edition, Scotland, 1843-1882 (1857) | Dingle Brae
Map 2: Ordnance Survey, One-inch to the mile maps of Scotland, 2nd Edition – 1885-1900 (1895) | Dingle
Map 3: Ordnance Survey Maps – Six-inch 2nd and later editions, Scotland, 1892-1960 (1894) |Dingle Brae (Lidar)
Ordnance Survey Name Books
By Permission of Scotland’s Places
 Ayrshire OS Name Books (1855-57) Vol. 49| Dingle Brae