|Suggested Meaning:||the boundary burn of the yearling calves|
|First element||Gaelic poll ‘burn’|
|Second element||Gaelic crioch ‘boundary’|
|Third element||Gaelic gamhainn ‘yearling calves’|
|Fourth element||Scots burn ‘stream‘|
|Blaeu Coila (1654):||N/A|
|OS Name Books (1855-57):||Pochriegavin* Burn|
(* incorrectly transcribed as Pochriiegavin)
|Location:||Ordnance Survey (1898)|
|Pochriegaun Burn (Johnson Map1828)|
The Ayrshire Ordnance Survey Name Book (1855-57) New Cumnock entry for Pochriegavin* Burn reads -.
A rivulet rising in Dalmellington Parish and flowing eastwardly, from the Boundary between the above named Parish and New Cumnock to its union with the Deugh Water, at Lochmeharb eminence at the north end of Connel Burn Rigg –
Of the four ‘Authorities for Spelling’ three give the name in the form Pochriegaun Burn (which is incorrectly transcribed as Pochriegann Burn) ,while the other, the ‘Published Six Inch plans of Kirkcudbrightshire’, won the day with Pochriegavin Burn. The Kirkcudbright maps had been published in 1851 and the Kirkcudbrightshire Ordnance Survey Name Book (1848-51), Carsphairn entry for Pochriegavin Burn reads -.
[Situation] Running Easterly & forming a boundary line betwixt the Cos. [Counties] of Ayr & Kirkcudbright to its junction with the Water of Deugh. A considerable stream or burn having its rise on the County of Ayr and running in an Easterly direction (forming the County boundary Line) to its confluence with the “Water of Deugh”
The entry is supported with the following note –
[Pochriegavin] This name, is locally Pronounced Pochrigaun, gaun being the provincial way of naming Gavin, Mr. Sloane is of the opinion that originally it might have been spelled, Polriegavin, but he would recommend the one given, being the local way.
It is interesting to note that the New Cumnock entry for Pochriegavin Burn states that the river rises in the Dalmellington Parish and flows to meet the Deugh at Lochmeharb. However, the OS Map (See Map 1 above) refers to the stretch of the burn from its source to the parish boundary with New Cumnock as Pougherygown Burn, which looks very much like a corruption of the aforementioned form Pochriegaun Burn. Indeed, in William Johnson’s Map of ‘Northern (Southern) part of Ayrshire’ (1828) the burn is shown as Pochriegaun Burn from its source in Dalmellington to the Deugh near Lochmeharb, New Cumnock.
The Ayrshire OS Name Book Entry (1855-57) Dalmellington entry for Pougherygown Burn reads –
A Stream collecting and flowing from the north base of Windy Standard in a northerly direction to the base of Benbrack thence in easterly direction till it leaves the Parish – at its junction with Stone Cross* burn, it thence becomes the County boundary and joins the Water of Deugh in Kirkcudbright – the true parent Stream of the Dee.
From a Dalmellington perspective the burn is known as Pougherygown Burn from its source in Dalmellington to the Deugh near Lochmeharb, New Cumnock. This reinforces the suggestion that Pougherygown, Pochriegavin and Pochriegaun are all various form of the same name.
*Stone Cross Burn defines the boundary between the parishes of New Cumnock and Dalmellington at this point 
Gaelic poll ‘hill’ Gaelic crioch ‘boundary Gaelic gamhainn ‘calves’
Sir Herbert Maxwell in ‘The Place-Names of Galloway (1930)’ draws a comparison between the place-names Pochriegavin Burn and Polgavin Burn – a small tributary of Brownhill Burn which meets the Water of Deugh some two miles south of where the Pochriegavin Burn joins the Deugh. Maxwell considers Polgavin as poll gahman [gavan] ‘the calves burn’ . The first element is Gaelic poll ‘stream’ and the second element is Gaelic gamhainn ‘year-old calf, six-months old cow, stirk, steer, young bullock’ .
In his earlier work ‘Studies in the Topography of Galloway (1887)’ Maxwell in considering the Pochriegavin suggested that ‘Pochrie is probably a corruption of the same original as Poultry, Poultrybuie‘, albeit without providing a derivation for that name , however by 1930, he considered Poultriebuie to be Gaelic poll tir buidhe ‘burn of the yellow land .
Maxwell doesn’t offer a fuller derivation of Pochriegavin Burn, however more recently the ‘Place-Names of the Galloway Glens’ has suggested the name comprised the following three elements Gaelic poll ‘burn’ Gaelic crioch ‘boundary’ Gaelic gamhainn ‘(yearling) calves’ – ‘The boundary burn of [the] (yearling) calves’ .
The name Pochriegavin is presumably an earlier name of the burn itself, reflecting local farming or herding practices. It may be significant in this context that Shiel Rig ‘ridge of summer grazing’ is a hill only a short distance to the south of Pochriegavin Burn.
Certainly in the Craigengillan Estate Map(1919) Sheil Rig sits in the lands of Brownhills, Carsphairn which northern boundary is defined by Pochriegavin Burn. (N.B. Interestingly, the aforementioned Polgavin Burn rises in the adjoining land of Meadowhead and joins the Brownhill Burn on the boundary between the two lands). When the lands were being sold off as lots in 1919 , Brownhills is described as a ‘Capital Sheep Farm‘. Included in the lot was ‘A Stone-built and Slated House containing Two rooms and Attic; also Milk House and a byre for 6 cattle’ .
The presence of gamhainn ‘calves’ suggests there was some livestock activity in the vicinity of Pochriegavin Burn. In the same way that Stot Sike (Scots stot ‘A young castrated ox, a steer, bullock’) suggests livestock activity in the lands of Upper Beoch in the parish of New Cumnock. . It should be noted that the lands of Lochmeharb, New Cumnock share a boundary with those of Brownhills, Carsphairn along the length of Pochriegavin Burn, lying between the two tributaries of Strathwiggan Burn, to the east, and Stonecross Burn to the west. As such, it is worth considering the livestock activity may have occurred on north bank of the the burn or indeed on both banks. [N.B. Lochmeharb was formerly part of the Craigengillan estate prior to the sale of 1919.]
The first two elements of Pochriegavin Burn, Gaelic poll crioch ‘boundary burn’ give the equivalent of the Scots march burn ‘boundary burn’. There are four March Burns and one Old March Burn (which must have been renamed from March Burn at one time) with the parish of New Cumnock. There are no examples of a March Burn combined with other place-name elements assigned to it, e.g. there is nothing like Calves March Burn or March Burn of the Calves!
There is no other named poll crioch / march burn in the vicinity of Pochriegavin therefore it is unlikely that Gaelic gamhainn was added to distinguish if from another boundary burn.
Perhaps Pochriegavin was originally known as poll crioch and gahmainn added later when livestock activity had become established in this area?
Pochriegavin Burn is one of many pol-, poll- water course place names that have been suffixed with the Scots element burn ‘stream’  ; an act that Sir Herbert Maxwell describes as follows  –
‘All these streams have had a ‘Burn’ plenoastically added to their names since Gaelic ceased to be spoken and understood.Sir Herbert Maxwell, Place Names of Galloway
|Kath Jones | Geograph: Pochriegavin Burn & Prickney Burn|
© Copyright Kath Jones and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.
| New Cumnock Place-Names | Stonecross Burn|
| Sir Herbert Maxwell ‘The Place-Names of Galloway (1930, 2001 Edition) | Polgavin Burn|
| Edward Dwelly , Illustrated Gaelic-English Dictionary (1902-11, Birlinn Ed.2001) | gamhainn|
| Sir Herbert Maxwell ‘Studies in the Topography of Galloway (1887)’ | Pochriegavin Burn|
| Sir Herbert Maxwell ‘The Place-Names of Galloway (1930, 2001 Edition) | Poultriebuide Burn|
| Place-names of Kirkcudbrightshire. 2022. Glasgow: University of Glasgow. https://kcb-placenames.glasgow.ac.uk | Pochriegavin Burn|
| CANMORE |Plan of the Craigengillan Estate, Ayrshire and Kirkcudbrightshire, For Sale by Auction by Messrs. Knight, Frank and Rutley, Brownhills|
| New Cumnock Place-Names | Stot Sike|
| Sir Herbert Maxwell ‘The Place-Names of Galloway (1930, 2001 Edition) | See Polchiffer Burn|
|Reproduced with the Permission of National Library of Scotland|
|Images used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) licence.|
|Map 1: Ordnance Survey Maps – Six-inch 2nd and later editions, Scotland, 1892-1960 (1894) | Pochriegavin Burn|
|Map 2: WilliamJohnson, Northern (Southern) part of Ayrshire / compiled from estate plans, &c. by William Johnson (1828). |Pochriegaun Burn|
|Map 3: Ordnance Survey, One-inch to the mile maps of Scotland, 2nd Edition – 1885-1900 (1895) | Pochriegavin Burn and Polgavin Burn|
Use of these digitised maps for non-commercial purposes is permitted under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC-BY-NC-SA) licence.
|Map 4: Craigengillan Estate | Reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland . Courtesy of Carsphairn Heritage Centre through the Dumfries Archival Mapping Project. | Brownhills|
|Map 5: Ordnance Survey Maps – Six-inch 2nd and later editions, Scotland, 1892-1960 (1894) | Pochriegavin Burn and its tributaries.|
|Ordnance Survey Name Books|
|By Permission of Scotland’s Places|
|Ayrshire OS Name Books (1855-57) Vol. 49|New Cumnock, Pochriegavin Burn|
|Ayrshire OS Name Books (1855-57) Vol. 21| Dalmellington, Pougherygown Burn|
|Kirkcudbrightshire OS Name Books (1848-1851) Vol. 1 | Carsphairn, Pochriegavin Burn|