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Winchcombeshire was anciently and for an unknown period accounted a county of England, but which is today the western half of Gloucestershire, within the Cotswold Hills.

Very little is known of Winchcombeshire. Suddenly in 1007 records mention a "Winchcombeshire", and then in 1016 it was gone, merged with Gloucestershire. It was ended not by the King but by the notorious Earl Eadric Streona, its demise mourned by a chronicler of the time.

The place is named Wincelcumbescir in Old English, and it was named after the town at it heart, Winchcombe (known in Old English as Wincelcumbe, a name meaning "Corner valley"). The abolition of Winchcombshire was put down by later historians as one of Eadric's ill deeds, singled out amongst his many treacheries.

Further reading

  • Whybra, Julian, A Lost English County: Winchcombeshire in the Tenth and Eleventh Centuries. (Studies in Anglo-Saxon History, 1). Boydell & Brewer, Woodbridge, 1990. ISBN 0-85115-500-6