Township: Salum

Map Reference: Salum 12

Name Type: shore

Meaning: This appears to have been gaelicised as late as the twentieth century as an cùlaibh ‘the back, back parts’ (Dwelly), situated, as it is, north-east of (or ‘beyond’ from the point of view of most of the island) the medieval farming township of Salum (Turnbull map).
Cùlaibh, however, is rare as a Gaelic place-name, although common in everyday speech. There is one example in Kingussie, Lochan a’ Chulaibh (SP). The OS did not record a Gaelic definite article, there is no accent on the initial vowel, and the OS transcription was -aobh rather than -aibh.
This is more likely to be a Norse name. The specific may be ON kúla (genitive kúlu) ‘ball, knob...medically a hump; kúlu-bakr humpback’ (CV, 360). Kula is a common name in Norway, and there is a Kuledalen in Buskerud (NG); Kúludalsá is a farm name in Iceland (SAM).
The generic may be h?fði ‘high headland...local name of a farm; a carved head, ship’s beak’ (CV, 306). It is a common generic in Norway, as in Kalhovd, Norderhov and Torshov (NS).

Other Forms: Culaobh Beag - ONB p111

Related Places:


Local Form:

Languages : Gaelic

Informants: Angus MacLean, Scarinish, 11/1996

Informant 2: OS