From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

A combe (/km/; also spelled coombe or coomb and, in place names, comb) can either refer to a steep, narrow valley, or to a small valley or large hollow on the side of a hill;[1][2] in any case, it is often understood simply to mean a small valley through which a watercourse does not run.[3][4] A well-known poem, "The Combe," describes it aptly. [5] The word "combe" is derived from Old English cumb, of the same meaning, and is unrelated to the English "comb". It derives ultimately from the same Brythonic source as the Welsh cwm, also of the same meaning. Today, the word is used mostly in reference to the combes of southern and southwestern England, of Wales, and of County Kerry in Ireland.[6][7]


The following is a list places in the British Isles named for having combes:

Higher Melcombe


  1. ^ "Combe". Merriam–Webster's Dictionary. Merriam–Webster. 2011. 
  2. ^ "Coomb". Webster's New World College Dictionary. Cleveland, Ohio: Wiley Publishing, Inc. 2010. 
  3. ^ "Combe". Encarta World English Dictionary: North American Edition. Bloomsbury Publishing Plc. 2009. 
  4. ^ "Coomb". Collins Pocket English Dictionary. HarperCollins Publishers Ltd. 2010. Archived from the original on 2011-10-18. 
  5. ^ Template:Https://
  6. ^ "Comb". Century Dictionary. 
  7. ^ "Coombe". Compact Oxford English Dictionary. Oxford University Press. 2010.