Local history

The name East Garston is of Saxon origin, originally "Asgar's tun". A tun was Saxon for a village or farmstead. "As" was Saxon for God, and "gar" meant spear; thus Asgar was "the spear of God".

Asgar is also recorded as Ansgar or Esgar, and was said to be the "hero of Hastings", where he was badly wounded defending the English Standard on 14th October 1066. Asgar was a procurer of horses for the king, and owned land in several counties. He witnessed many of Edward the Confessor's charters, and also the queen mother's will. He appears to have held all the cultivated land of the Lambourn Hundred, which encompassed East Garston. East Garston or Esgareston was held by Eva de Tracey in a number of documents dating from the 1200s, including the "Testa de Neville". It was known locally as Argason.

The Victoria County History of Berkshire records that the village was called Esegarestun in the twelfth century, Hesegerton and Esegareston in thirteenth, Esgarston in fourteenth and Argaston or Estgarston in sixteenth century. The introduction of the " t " in the first syllable was an early corruption, and not indicative of "east".


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