Ottery St Mary, known as "Ottery" ( or ), is a town and civil parish in the East Devon district of Devon, England, on the River Otter, about east of Exeter on the B3174. At the 2001 census, the parish, which includes the villages of West Hill, Metcombe, Fairmile, Alfington, Tipton St John and Wiggaton, had a population of 7,692. The population of the parish alone was at the 2011 census was 4,898. There are two electoral wards in Ottery(Rural & Town). The total population of both wards at the above census was 9,022. The place-name 'Ottery St Mary' is first attested in the Domesday Book of 1086, where it appears as 'Otri' and 'Otrei'. 'Oteri Sancte Marie' is first mentioned in 1242. The town takes its name from the River Otter on which it stands, the river taking its name from the animal. The 'St Mary' element refers to the fact that the town belonged to the church of St Mary in Rouen in 1086.
The town was the birthplace of the Romantic poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge, where his father, the Reverend John Coleridge, was a well-respected vicar. The noted diplomat Sir Ernest Satow spent his retirement (1906–29) here at a house called Beaumont, which still stands. Sir Ernest was buried in the churchyard; there is a commemorative plaque to him in the church.
Ottery's notable buildings include the Tumbling Weir and St Mary's church. The town is the site of The King's School, now a comprehensive school, a former grammar school founded in 1545 by Henry VIII, and Ottery St Mary Primary School.
Ottery St. Mary's history is sufficiently significant for the town to have also been a "hundred", one of the ancient divisions of the county. It was an urban district from 1894 until 1974. Its church is very large and of architectural importance (see the discussion in Wikipedia).