New Fetter Lane, EC1N

Place Name

This was originally just Fetter Lane, the New being a post-Second World War addition, which used to run all the way from Fleet Street to Holborn. Early incarnations of the name were Faytureslane or Faitereslane, and later Fewterlane and in 1568 Feterlane. It is believed to come from the Old French faitor meaning lawyer, which given the number of inns of court in the region makes sense. By the 14thCentury however the name had taken on another meaning, that of an idle or feckless person prone to imposters or cheats who feigned illness. An alternative origin of the name is the fetter (lance vest) made by armourers working for the nearby Knights Templar.


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