Hamlet (place)

A hamlet is a small human settlement. In different jurisdictions and geographies, hamlets may be the size of a town, village or parish, be considered a smaller settlement or subdivision or satellite entity to a larger settlement. The word and concept of a hamlet have roots in the Anglo-Norman settlement of England, where the old French hamlet came to apply to small human settlements. In British geography, a hamlet is considered smaller than a village and distinctly without a church (one road with houses either side).

Waldkirch Oberwil
Oberwil in Waldkirch (Switzerland). About 3,100 people live in Waldkirch, which is near St. Gallen


The word comes from Anglo-Norman hamelet, corresponding to Old French hamelet, the diminutive of Old French hamel. This, in turn, is a diminutive of Old French ham, possibly borrowed from (West Germanic) Franconian languages. Compare with modern French hameau, Dutch heem, German Heim, Old English hām and Modern English home.[1]

DSC00029 Java Little Sundanais Traditional Village Kampung Naga (6219569245)
The hamlet Kampung Naga in West Java Province, Indonesia


In Afghanistan the counterpart of the hamlet is the qala (Dari: قلعه, Pashto: کلي) meaning "fort"[2] or "hamlet".[3] The Afghan qala is a fortified group of houses, generally with its own community building such as a mosque, but without its own marketplace. The qala is the smallest type of settlement in Afghan society, trumped by the village (Dari/Pashto: ده), which is larger and includes a commercial area.


In Australia a hamlet is a small village. Officially, a hamlet differs from a village in having no commercial premises, but has residences and may have community buildings such as churches and public halls.


In Canada's three territories, hamlets are officially designated municipalities.[4] As of January 1, 2010:

In Canada's provinces, hamlets are usually small unincorporated communities within a larger municipality (similar to civil townships in the United States), such as many communities within the single-tier municipalities of Ontario or within Alberta's specialized and rural municipalities.[8]

Canada's two largest hamlets—Fort McMurray (formerly incorporated as a city)[9] and Sherwood Park—are located in Alberta. They each have populations, within their main urban area, in excess of 60,000—well in excess of the 10,000-person threshold that can choose to incorporate as a city in Alberta.[10][11] As such, these two hamlets have been further designated by the Province of Alberta as urban service areas.[12] An urban service area is recognized as equivalent to a city for the purposes of provincial and federal program delivery and grant eligibility.[13][14]


During the 18th century, for rich or noble people, it was up-to-date to create their own hameau (hamlet) in their gardens. They were a group of some houses or farms with rustic appearance, but in fact were very comfortable. The best known is the Hameau de la Reine built by the queen Marie-Antoinette in the park of the Château de Versailles. Or the Hameau de Chantilly built by Louis Joseph, Prince of Condé in Chantilly, Oise.

Lieu-dit (local name) is another name for hamlet. The difference is that a hamlet is permanently inhabited, but a lieu-dit is not (in winter for example, or when the lieu-dit is only an important road crossing).


The German word for hamlet is Weiler (German: [ˈva͡ɪlɐ]). A Weiler has, compared to a Dorf (village), no infrastructure (i.e. no church, no inn, no school, no store). The houses and farms of a Weiler can be grouped (in the hills and the mountains) or scattered (in the plains). In North West Germany, a group of scattered farms is called Bauernschaft. In a Weiler there are no street names, the houses are just numbered.


In different states of India, there are different words for hamlet. In Haryana and Rajasthan it is called "dhani" (Hindi: ढाणी ḍhāṇī) or "Thok".[15][16][17][18] In Gujarat a hamlet is called a "nesada", which are more prevalent in the Gir forest. In Maharashtra it's called a "pada". In southern Bihar, especially in the Magadh division, a hamlet is called a "bigha".


All over Indonesia, hamlets are translated as "small village", or kampung. They are known as dusun in Central Java and East Java, banjar in Bali, jorong or kampuang in West Sumatra.


In Pakistan a hamlet is called a gron (pronounced as grona with some nasalisation at the end).


In Poland a hamlet is called osada, and is legally a small rural settlement, especially differing by type of buildings or inhabited by population connected with some place or workplace (like mill hamlet, forest hamlet, fishermen hamlet, railway hamlet, State Agricultural Farm hamlet). It can be independent settlement, or a part of other settlement, like village.[19]


In Romania hamlets are called cătunuri (singular: cătun), and they represent villages that contain several houses at most. They are legally considered villages, and statistically, they are placed in the same category. Like villages, they do not have a separate administration, and thus are not an administrative division, but are part of a parent commune.


In the Russian language there are several words which mean "a hamlet", but all of them are approximately equal. The most common word is деревня (derevnia, the word meant "an arable" in the past); the words село (selo, from the Russian word селиться (selit'tsa), meaning "to settle") and посёлок (posiolok) are quite frequently used, too. A hamlet in Russia usually has a church, some little shops, a school and a local culture center (дом культуры / dom kultury, literally meaning "a house of culture"), in which different culture events and national holidays take place. A hamlet in Russia consists of several tens of wooden (sometimes brick) houses. In the past hamlets were the most common kind of settlement in Russia, but nowadays many hamlets in Russia are settled only during the summer as places for vacation because people go to towns and cities in order to find better jobs and get a better education than a rural school can offer.


In the four national languages hamlets are known as Weiler (German), hameaux (French), frazioni (Italian) and fracziun (Romansh). A hamlet is always part of a larger municipality or may be shared between two municipalities. The difference between a hamlet and a village is that typically a hamlet lacks a compact core settlement and lacks a central building such as a church or inn. However, some hamlets (Kirchwiler) may have grown up as an unplanned settlement around a church.[20] There is no population limit that defines a hamlet and some hamlets have a larger population than some of the smallest municipalities. Generally there are no street names in a hamlet; rather, addresses are given by hamlet name and a number. House numbers might start at one side of the hamlet and continue to the other side or may have no clear organization.

A hamlet may form or have formed a Bürgergemeinde (legal place of citizenship regardless of where a person was born or currently lives) and may own common property for the Bürgergemeinde.


In Ukraine, a very small village such as a hamlet usually is called a khutir.[21]

United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, the word hamlet (having the French origin given at the top of this article), means a house or village without a church,[22] although hamlets are recognised as part of land use planning policies and administration. In modern usage it generally refers to a secondary settlement in a civil parish, after the main settlement (if any). Hamlets may have been formed around a single source of economic activity such as a farm, mill, mine or harbour that employed its working population. Some hamlets, particularly those that have a medieval church, may be the result of the depopulation of a village; an example of such a hamlet is Graby. Because of the hilly topography of the parish, the village of Clent, situated on the Clent Hills consists of five distinct hamlets.

The term hamlet was used in some parts of the country, notably Wales, to denote a geographical subdivision of a parish (which might or might not contain a settlement). Elsewhere, these subdivisions were called "townships" or "tithings".[23][24]

In the Scottish Highlands the term clachan, of Gaelic derivation, may be preferred to the term hamlet.[25] Also found in Scotland more generally is fermtoun used in the specific case of a settlement of agricultural workers' homes.

In Northern Ireland the common Irish place name element baile is sometimes considered equivalent to the term hamlet in English, although baile would actually have referred to what is known in English today as a townland: that is to say, a geographical locality rather than a small village.

United States


In Mississippi, a 2009 state law (§ 17-27-5) set aside the term "municipal historical hamlet" to designate any former city, town or village with a current population of less than six hundred (600) inhabitants that lost its charter before 1945. The first such designation was applied to Bogue Chitto, Lincoln County.

New York

In New York, hamlets are unincorporated settlements within towns. Hamlets are usually not legal entities and have no local government or official boundaries. Their approximate locations will often be noted on road signs, however.

A hamlet usually depends upon the town that contains it for municipal services and government; the town can define a "special use district" (a type of local entity designed to provide a specific service, such as water, sewer, or lighting) to provide only that hamlet with services. A hamlet could be described as the rural or suburban equivalent of a neighborhood in a city or village. The area of a hamlet may not be exactly defined; it may be designated by the Census Bureau, or it may rely on some other form of border (such as a ZIP Code, school district or fire district for more urbanized areas; rural hamlets are typically only demarcated by speed zones on the roads serving them). Others, such as Forestville, New York, will be the remnants of former villages, with borders coextant with the previously defined borders of the defunct or dissolved village. Some hamlets proximate to urban areas are sometimes continuous with their cities and appear to be neighborhoods, but they still are under the jurisdiction of the town. Some localities designated as hamlets, such as Levittown in the Town of Hempstead, with a population of over 50,000, are more populous than some incorporated cities in the state.


In Oregon, specifically in Clackamas County, a hamlet is a form of local government for small communities, which allows the citizens therein to organize and co-ordinate community activities. Hamlets do not provide services such as utilities or fire protection, and do not have the authority to levy taxes or fees. There are four hamlets in Oregon: Beavercreek, Mulino, Molalla Prairie, and Stafford.


In Vietnam, a hamlet (xóm, ấp) is the smallest unofficial administrative unit. It is a subdivision of a commune or township ().

See also


  1. ^ T. F. Hoad, English Etymology, Oxford University Press, 1993, ISBN 0-19-283098-8.
  2. ^ Sulayman, Hayyim (1934–1936). "New Persian-English dictionary, complete and modern, designed to give the English meanings of over 50,000 words, terms, idioms, and proverbs in the Persian language, as well as the transliteration of the words in English characters. Together with a sufficient treatment of all the grammatical features of the Persian Language". dsalsrv02.uchicago.edu. University of Chicago. Retrieved 2018-05-04.CS1 maint: Date format (link)
  3. ^ "A dictionary of the Puk'hto, Pus'hto, or language of the Afghans". dsalsrv02.uchicago.edu. Retrieved 2018-05-04.
  4. ^ a b c d Statistics Canada (2010). "Interim List of Changes to Municipal Boundaries, Status, and Names (From January 2, 2009 to January 1, 2010)" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-17.
  5. ^ "Population and dwelling counts, for Canada, provinces and territories, and census subdivisions (municipalities), 2016 and 2011 censuses – 100% data (Northwest Territories)". Statistics Canada. February 8, 2017. Retrieved April 19, 2018.
  6. ^ "Population and dwelling counts, for Canada, provinces and territories, and census subdivisions (municipalities), 2016 and 2011 censuses – 100% data (Nunavut)". Statistics Canada. February 8, 2017. Retrieved April 19, 2018.
  7. ^ Statistics Canada (2018-02-08). "Population and dwelling counts, for Canada, provinces and territories, and census subdivisions (municipalities), 2006 and 2001 censuses – 100% data (Yukon Territory)". Retrieved 2018-04-18.
  8. ^ Alberta Municipal Affairs (2010-04-01). "Specialized and Rural Municipalities and Their Communities" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-17.
  9. ^ Alberta Municipal Affairs (2010-11-15). "Municipal Profile – Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo". Retrieved 2010-11-17.
  10. ^ Alberta Municipal Affairs (2009-09-15). "2009 Official Population List" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-17.
  11. ^ Alberta Queen's Printer (2009-09-15). "2009 Official Population List". Retrieved 2010-11-17.
  12. ^ Alberta Municipal Affairs (2010-04-01). "2010 Municipal Codes" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-17.
  13. ^ Province of Alberta (1994-12-21). "Order in Council 817/94 (R.M. of Wood Buffalo status change to specialized municipality)" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-17.
  14. ^ Province of Alberta (1995-12-06). "Order in Council 761/95 (Strathcona County status change to specialized municipality)" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-17.
  15. ^ Sukhvir Singh Gahlot: Rural Life in Rajasthan, page 4.Rajasthani Granthagar, Giani Press Delhi 1986
  16. ^ Ashutosh Goyal, 2015, "RBS Visitors Guide India - Rajasthan: Rajasthan Travel guide"., Data & Expo India Pvt Ltd, ISBN 9380844786.
  17. ^ Rann Singh Mann, K. Mann, 1989, "Tribal Cultures and Change"., pp. 23.
  18. ^ S. H. M. Rizvi, 1987 "Mina, the ruling tribe of Rajasthan: socio-biological appraisal"., pp. 34.
  19. ^ Ustawa z dnia 29 sierpnia 2003 r. o urzędowych nazwach miejscowości i obiektów fizjograficznych (Dz.U. 2003 nr 166 poz. 1612
  20. ^ Projektteam SINUS. Landschaftsökologische Strukturmerkmale als Indikatoren der Nachhaltigkeit, Spatial INdices for LandUSe Sustainability (SINUS) (PDF) (Report). University of Vienna. pp. 308–317. Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 December 2013. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
  21. ^ ХУТІР (Khutir) // Ukrainian Academic DictionaryUkrainian: Академічний тлумачний словник української мови
  22. ^ Hardy-Ivamy, E.R. (1993). Mozley & Whiteley's law dictionary. London: Butterworths. p. 124. ISBN 978-0-406-01420-7.
  23. ^ Kain R J P, Oliver R D, Historic Parishes of England & Wales, HDS, 2001, ISBN 0-9540032-0-9, p 12
  24. ^ "Status definition: Hamlet". A Vision of Britain through Time. Great Britain Historical GIS Project. Retrieved 2007-08-31.
  25. ^ "Clachan". Dictionary of the Scots Language. Archived from the original on 4 April 2012. Retrieved 2011-10-24.

External links


Caserio or caserío may refer to:

Hamlet (place), in Spanish-speaking countries

Caserío vasco or Baserri, a typical Basque farm building

Marjorie Constance Caserio (born 1929), American chemist

Mathias Caserio (born 1983), Argentine football player

Nick Caserio (born 1975), American football executive

Sante Geronimo Caserio (1873–1894), Italian anarchist and assassin of Marie François Sadi Carnot

Cefn Rhigos

Cefn Rhigos (name meaning '(the) ridge (at) Rhigos') is a hamlet (place) to the west of the village of Rhigos, Wales. Despite being eight (8) miles from the town centre, for postal purposes it comes under Aberdare.

It is the most westerly named settlement of the Cynon Valley. The border with The Vale of Neath lies a few hundred yards to the west.


A clachan (Irish: clochán, pronounced [ˈkl̪ˠoxaːnˠ], or clachan, pronounced [ˈkl̪ˠaxənˠ]; Scottish Gaelic: clachan, [ˈkʰl̪ˠaxan]; Manx: claghan, pronounced [ˈkʰlaxan]) is a small settlement or hamlet in Ireland, the Isle of Man and Scotland. Though many were originally kirktowns, today they are often thought of as small villages lacking a church, post office, or other formal building. It is likely that many date to medieval times or earlier – a cluster of small single-storey cottages of farmers and/or fishermen, invariably found on poorer land. They were often related to the rundale system of farming. According to David Lloyd, the Great Famine in Ireland (1845–49) caused such disruption to the social system that the clachans there virtually disappeared; many in the Scottish Highlands were victims of the Clearances. In some cases, they have evolved into holiday villages, or one or two houses have taken over, turning smaller houses into agricultural outhouses. Remains can be seen in many upland and coastal areas. Some are clustered in a dip in the landscape, to protect from Atlantic winds, but others stretch haphazardly along main roads.


Cwmfelinfach is a small village located in the Sirhowy valley of south-east Wales. It is part of the district of Caerphilly within the historic boundaries of Monmouthshire. Located north of Wattsville and about 5 miles north of the nearest town Risca and south of Blackwood.

Cwmfelinfach was home to a coal mining community during the early to mid 20th century. The colliery, known as "Nine Mile Point", opened about 1905 and closed in 1964. Nine Mile Point Colliery was the site of the first ever 'sit in' of miners. During 1935 there was a "stay down strike" involving 164 colliers. They were protesting over the use of "Scab" miners (men not members of the Federation unlike the rest of the "Points" workforce) and their ordeal only ended after the company promised no non-federation men would be employed at the colliery, the stay-down strike lasted for 177 hours. Miners from other collieries in the area, some taking similar action, supported their action.

Cwmfelinfach can be translated from the Welsh language as "valley of the little mill". The village was a small hamlet (place) until the late 19th century — therefore the majority of housing is traditional terraced from early 20th century. A map of 1885 showns the Melin (mill) and the Welsh Calvinistic Methodist chapel Babel Chapel. [1] The grave of Islwyn the 19th century Welsh-language poet can be found here. [2]

To the east the valley is bordered by the hills of Pen-y-Trwyn (1,028 ft / 313 m). To the west is Mynydd y Grug (1,132 ft / 345 m).


Garmondsway is a small dispersed hamlet (place) in the parish of Kelloe in County Durham, England situated between Durham and Sedgefield.

It is notable as including substantial remains of an abandoned village including an extant ridge and furrow field system and became a scheduled monument in 1957.

It was formerly part of the extra-parochial chapelry of Garmondsway Moor due to its ownership by Sherburn Hospital. Garmondsway Moor was also a civil parish between 1866 and 1937.

King Canute (1017–1035) reportedly walked five miles barefoot from Garmondsway to Durham Cathedral on pilgrimage, and gave the church a large estate around Staindrop and Gainford.

German toponymy

Placenames in the German language area can be classified by the language from which they originate, and by their age.


Hameau (pl. hameaux) is the French word for hamlet (place), a small settlement.

Hameau may also refer to:

Hameau (garden feature), imitation hamlets built for aristocrats in the 18th century

Hameau de Chantilly, Château de Chantilly, 1774

Hameau de la Reine, Château de Versailles, 1783 (associated with Queen Marie-Antoinette)

Hameau de Chantilly (Paris), Elysée Palace, Paris, 1792, later an entertainment venue

Outline of geography

The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to geography:

Geography – study of earth and its people.

Postal village

A postal village is generally a community, settlement, or hamlet (place) that has a post office and is designated as such by the postal administration. It may be seen as a rural neighbourhood.

This term seems to have been most common in the latter half of the 19th century when it was in common use in maps and gazetteers, variously abbreviated p.v., P.V., PV, and p-v. The term is generally used for a community within a township (rural region) as opposed to an incorporated village or other municipal government. By establishing a post office in a particular community it receives official recognition, often for the first time, for a name, an important step in the development of any community.

Potters Mills, Pennsylvania

Potters Mills is a Hamlet_(place) in Potter Township, Centre County, Pennsylvania, United States, just east of the Potter-Allison Farm. It is named after

General James Potter (1729–1789), who built a log cabin and grist mill there, at what is now the intersection of General Potter Highway (U.S. Route 322) and the Old Fort Road (Pennsylvania Route 144).


Smila (Ukrainian pronunciation: [ˈsmʲiɫɑ]) is a city located on Dnieper Upland near the Tyasmyn River. It is a district center of Cherkasy Oblast of Ukraine. Smila is the biggest transport center of the region as a huge railway station is located here. Settlements Ploske and Irdynivka are subordinated to Smila city council. During the Russian Empire Smila was a township which subordinated to Cherkassy county of Kyiv hubernia.

Smila serves as the administrative center of Smila Raion (district), but is designated as a City of regional significance and does not belong to the raion. Population: 68,805 (2017 est.)

Village (Pennsylvania)

A village in Pennsylvania is a geographic area within a larger political subdivision, usually a township, although some villages are located within a borough. Often, a village is also a census-designated place or the site of a post office, but this is not always the case.

The use of the term "village" in such a manner is unusual among U.S. states; the term is used in other states to describe the type of municipalities Pennsylvania calls "boroughs."


Ystradyfodwg (Vale of Tyfodwg) was an ancient upland parish in Glamorgan, Wales. It is believed to have been named after Tyfodwg (or Dyfodwg) who was either a 7th-century saint or chieftain.

It included most of the valleys of the Rhondda Fawr and Rhondda Fach rivers. Initially a sparsely populated wild area of upland sheep-walks, it became in the mid 19th century a dynamic centre of the coal mining industry, with a large, new industrial population.

The parish was large, with an area of 10127 Hectares, but had only 542 inhabitants in 1801. It stretched from the confluence of the Rhondda rivers at Porth, over the mountain as far as the Vale of Neath. It was divided into four townships or hamlet (place)s: Home (between the rivers), Clydach (south of the Rhondda Fawr), Middle (the upper part of the valley) and Rhigos (north of the mountains).

During the 19th century, the population of the parish increased as follows:

Lower-quality coal from the Upper Coal series was worked in a small way in Trealaw as early as 1807, but the development of the Rhondda steam coal gave rise to the rapid population growth. The development began with the start-up of the Bute Merthyr colliery in Treherbert in 1855. In the Rhondda Fach, the first coal was mined in 1862 at Ferndale. The Taff Vale Railway reached Treherbert in 1856. Collieries then rapidly developed along the valley, with the lower part of the valley developing last because of the deeper pits required to find the steam coal in that area. By the end of the century, mining villages formed an almost continuous urban strip along both valley floors, with coal mining and its ancillary trades virtually the sole industry.

The majority of the incomers came from West Wales, particularly Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion and spoke Welsh. Over 70% of the population of the parish was Welsh-speaking in 1891.

In 1877, the Hamlet of Rhigos was made a separate civil parish, and the remainder of Ystradyfodwg, together with the adjoining Rhondda valley portions of the parishes of Llanwonno and Llantrisant, became the urban sanitary district of Ystradyfodwg. This extended district became Ystradyfodwg Civil Parish and Urban District in 1894, and was renamed Rhondda Civil Parish and Urban District in 1897. See Rhondda (district).

Designations for types of administrative territorial entities

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