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Gloucester

(2 syl.). The ancient Britons called the town Caer Glou (bright city). The Romans Latinised Glou or Glove in Glev-um, and added colonia (the Roman colony of Glev-um). The Saxons restored the old British word Glou, and added ceaster, to signify it had been a Roman camp. Hence the word means “Glou, the camp city.” Geoffrey of Monmouth says, when Arviragus married Genuissa, daughter of Claudius Cæsar, he induced the emperor to build a city on the spot where the nuptials were solemnised; this city was called Caer-Clau', a contraction of Caer-Claud, corrupted into Caer-glou, converted by the Romans into Glou-caster, and by the Saxons into Glou-ceaster or Glou-cester. “Some,” continues the same “philologist,” “derive the name from the Duke Gloius, a son of Claudius, born in Britain on the very spot.”

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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