This article investigates the place-names of the island of Iona in Scotland, using it as a case-study to consider broader issues relating to theoretical and practical approaches to Scottish onomastics and name-studies more generally. The multilingual environment of Scotland creates unique challenges when working towards a process of standardisation and comprehensive name-analysis. When researching the place-names of Iona, which was historically Gaelic-speaking, it is necessary to carefully balance the interface between Gaelic and English and to examine potential tensions between the two languages in a toponymic context. Many of the island’s place-names are not recorded on published maps, creating a need to carefully analyse how they have been used and preserved in different contexts. Furthermore, this requires a consideration of authority in naming processes by asking who has the right to create and preserve place-names. The discussion will address contested namescapes in a multilingual environment by examining two place-names on Iona (Sìthean Mòr and Angel Hill which both refer to the same feature). In doing so we can elucidate the role of place-names as ideologically charged markers of cultural heritage.
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Opphavsrett 2022 Sofia Evemalm-Graham