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English nameKilvaxter
Gaelic nameCille Bhacastair
Meaningchurch of *Bacastar
Genitive formChille Bhacastair

Location and type of place name

LocationSkye, Inner Hebrides
Local authorityHighland ~ A’ Ghàidhealtachd
Parish post 1891Kilmuir
County post 1891Inverness-shire ~ Siorrachd Inbhir Nis
Topographical feature typeSettlement ~ Tuineachadh
Post townPORTREE
Postcode areaIV51
Relevant main roadsA855
OS sheet number408
OS grid referenceNG379694
Type of name


Element meaningG cill ~ church; obscure element ~ bacastar
Element typereligiontopography

External Resources

OS mapsGazetteer for Scotland

Further Information

Language notesNow understood as: nom. sg. cill fem. ‘church’ (with epenthetic vowel) + lenited and slenderised gen. sg. of obscure element *bacastar = ‘church of bacastar’
Killibaxter 1644 Retours (Inverness) no. 68
Kilvakisa 1654 Blaeu Map (Skye)
Kilvaxter 1662 Retours (Inverness) no. 88
Killibaxter 1666 RMS xi no. 902
Cille Bhacstair Dwelly 1912
(Cille Bhagstar) cellar church of the baker (uncertain) Forbes, 228
Cille Bhacastair: appears to be a Mac an Tàilleir
Gaelic/ Norse name meaning “the
church at the settlement on the bank”. Mac an Tàilleir
Cille Bhacastair ['vaʰkə'stəðʲ] Cox, local source
Additional infoB. Gordon 1964, 91-94 discusses the possibility that this name is not originally a cill name at all, but is a reinterpretation of a staðr name. Whatever the identity of the second element, she proves it does not represent a saint’s name.
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