CHESHIRE-L ArchivesArchiver > CHESHIRE > 2008-06 > 1212917894
From: allen williams <>
Subject: Re: [CHS] LEA pronunciation
Date: Sun, 08 Jun 2008 10:38:49 +0100
References: <000701c8c877$18e73c50$b4094b4f@home> <009201c8c8c9$238109a0$9b64e150@j3k4c7><001f01c8c90f$af96d7d0$6401a8c0@ABDESKTOP>
I know it is North, not mid-, Cheshire, but I have nearly finished
transcribing the 1841 census for Sale and Ashton, and have come across
many 'Lee' but no 'Lea' versions of this name. 'Leah' does appear once
or twice as a forename, but no 'Lear' so far.
Again, on the basis of this transcription, it does seem that the chaps
doing the census wrote down their version of what they heard, for
example, one would invariably write 'Derbyshire' and another 'Darbyshire'.
I'd therefore lean to 'Lee' as a likely pronunciation of 'Lea' hereabouts.
For an illiterate family, spelling their surname would be irrelevant.
However, on learning to write, they would either have to be instructed
how to spell their name, or would need to adopt a spelling representing
how it was pronounced. If the latter, I could well imagine a
newly-literate 'Le-ah' writing Lea for their surname, perhaps not
realizing that lea is the spelling of a word commonly pronounced 'lee'
as in 'over the leas and far away', thus sowing the seed of the present
discussion, and to leading their own descendants always having to spell
their name when introduced to someone. This is irritating, I know.
Allen (not Alan!) Williams
Andrew Bailey wrote:
> I found that my G-Grandfather Walter Lea born in 1877 in Siddington is
> recorded in the 1891 census as Walter Lear - so i think this probably
> indicates how he pronounced it.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Donald Tomkinson" <>
> To: "Eric Milward" <>; "Cheshire List"
> Sent: Saturday, June 07, 2008 7:03 PM
> Subject: Re: [CHS] LEA pronunciation
>> Several families I've known in the south west Cheshire area have
>> pronounced their name Lea-a. This is interesting as it is near to the
>> original Anglo-Saxon Leagh.
>> I know at least one Lea-a who resigned himself to pronouncing his name
>> as Lea because most other people pronounce it that way.
>> Don Tomkinson
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: "Eric Milward" <>
>> To: "Cheshire List" <>
>> Sent: Saturday, June 07, 2008 9:13 AM
>> Subject: [CHS] LEA pronunciation
>>> How would the name LEA be pronounced in mid Cheshire?
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