Paples is a field name recorded in a list of old names collected by a local farmer about 20 years ago. It appears to relate to the same location as the field now known as Gypsy Fields which incorporates a strip called Gypsy’s Loaning and is a place where travelling folk used to park up every summer.

The name Paples may preserve the word papil from the Brittonic language. It has its roots in the Latin word pāpiliō meaning butterfly and was adopted as a word for a tent or a wide range of temporary buildings. This word is found in several place-names in southern Scotland and usually refers to temporary bothies used for summer grazing but could be a name given to a stopping place for travellers.

Other field names that may relate to temporary dwelling places include:

The Dalarai from the Gaelic dail-àirighe meaning shieling, camping field.

Laganorie from the Gaelic lagan na h-àirighe meaning hollow of the shieling, seasonal camping-place.

This information was gathered as part of the PLACE in the Biosphere project. Click on the links to visit their web site and blog.

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