St Piran's Well in Trethevy
St Piran's Well in Trethevy

Trethevy has been recorded on OS maps as Trethevey (with an extra "e") since Victorian times and still appears on modern OS maps like this depsite road signs, Cornwall Council and Google all using "Trethevy".

The first record of the place name is from 1196 as Tredewi. It is thought to be based on a personal name (Dewi's farm). The "d" in the recorded name is likely to be from the Cornish letter "dh" which is pronounced a bit like "th". The place name Trethewey is from the same origin. There are some other places in Cornwall named Trethevy too (all formerly Trethewy) so perhaps the Dewi family were quite successful landowners in early mediaeval times.

Roman occupation of Trethevy is suggested by an inscribed granite pillar, now situated on the roadside by St. Piran's, a former monastery and now a private residence. The inscription on the stone reads C DOMI N GALLO ET VOLUS – ‘For the Emperor Caesars our lords Gallus and Volusian.’ (Trebonianus Gallus and Antoninianus Volusianus reigned from 251-253 AD). The pillar lends weight to the importance of the nearby trading post of Tintagel Island where merchants from as far away as the Mediterranean came to trade with the Cornish for their tin.

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