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Marlborough

Trip Planner Europe  /  UK  /  England  /  Wiltshire  /  Marlborough
(4.2/5 based on 500+ reviews for top 10 attractions)
Things to do: historic sites, shopping, nature
Marlborough is a market town and civil parish in the English county of Wiltshire on the Old Bath Road, the old main road from London to Bath. It boasts the second widest high street in Britain, after Stockton-on-Tees. The town is on the River Kennet.HistoryThe earliest sign of human habitation is a 62ft high prehistoric tumulus in the grounds of Marlborough College. Recent radiocarbon dating has found it to date from about 2400 BC. It is of similar age to the larger Silbury Hill about 5mi west of the town. Legend has it that the Mound is the burial site of Merlin and that the name of the town, Marlborough comes from Merlin's Barrow. On John Speed's map of Wiltshire (1611), the town's name is recorded as Marlinges boroe. The town's motto is Ubi nunc sapientis ossa Merlini - Where now are the bones of wise Merlin. More plausibly, the town's name probably derives from the medieval term for chalky ground "marl" – thus "town on chalk".Further evidence of human occupation comes from the discovery of the Marlborough Bucket, an Iron Age burial bucket, with decorations of human heads and animals on sheet bronze, now on display at the Wiltshire Heritage Museum in Devizes.
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