The oldest mentioning of Haarlem dates from the 10th century. The name probably comes from “Haarlo-heim”. This name is composed of three elements: haar, lo and heim. There is not much dispute about the meaning of lo and heim; in Old Dutch toponyms lo always refers to ‘forest’ and heim (heem, em or um) to ‘home’ or ‘house’. Haar, however, has several meanings, one of them corresponding with the location of Haarlem on a sand dune: ‘elevated place’. The name Haarlem or Haarloheim would therefore mean ‘home on a forested dune’.