Boies History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The surname Boies is a topographic surname, which was given to a person who resided near a physical feature such as a hill, stream, church, or type of tree. Habitation names form the other broad category of surnames that were derived from place-names. They were derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. Other local names are derived from the names of houses, manors, estates, regions, and entire counties. As a general rule, the greater the distance between an individual and their homeland, the larger the territory they were named after. For example, a person who only moved to another parish would be known by the name of their original village, while people who migrated to a different country were often known by the name of a region or country from which they came. The name Boies is derived from the Old French word "bois," which means "wood," and indicates that the original bearer lived near a wooded area, such as a forest. [1]

Early Origins of the Boies family

The surname Boies was first found in various parts of Scotland including Hugo Delboys who witnessed a confirmation charter by Hugh, Bishop of St. Andrews c. 1185-1188 according to the Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae. A few years later, Richard del Bois witnessed a confirmation charter of fishery in Torduf between 1194 and 1211. [2]

About the same time, Walterus de Bosco witnessed a charter by Robert the Bruce c. 1190. Robert Boys was listed in Dumfriesshire c. 1259. Willelmus de Bosch or de Bosco, cancellarius domini regis, appears frequently as witness in the chartularies of Soltre, Glasgow, Kelso, Brechin, and Arnbroath between 1189-1222. Gaufridus de Bosco, Humphrey de Bosco, and Thomas de Bosco appear as charter witnesses between 1215-1245. Robert Boys is recorded in Dumfriesshire, c. 1259. [2]

The Scottish branch of this ancient Norman family likely moved north from England to their first place of landing and settlement after the Conquest, as many of the earliest records of the family in Scotland were almost 100 years later. By example, Robert de Bois held estates in Buckinghamshire in 1086. The De Bois-Herbert family were barons of Halberton, Devon c. 1050.[3]

"Sir Humphrey de Bois, of Dryfesdale, who was slain at Lochmaben in 1333, is supposed by Dalrymple to have been the ancestor of Hector Boece, the historian." [4]

Early History of the Boies family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Boies research. Another 128 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1150, 1296, 1413, 1719, 1465, 1536, 1543, 1594, 1543, 1594 and are included under the topic Early Boies History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Boies Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Boyce, Boyes, Boze, Bois, Boise, Boice, Boas, Bost, Bust, Boast, Boost and many more.

Early Notables of the Boies family (pre 1700)

Notable among the family at this time was Hector Boece (sometimes spelt Boethius, or Boyce) (1465-1536), a Scottish philosopher and first Principal of King's College in Aberdeen. John Boste or Boaste (1543?-1594), was and English Catholic priest, "born of a good family at Dufton, in Westmorland, in or about 1543, and educated at Oxford. He was imprisoned in the Tower, where he was 'often most cruelly rack'd, insomuch that he was afterwards forced to go crooked upon a staff.' When he had so far recovered as to be fit to travel, he was sent back to the north, and...
Another 99 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Boies Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Boies family to Ireland

Some of the Boies family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 60 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Boies family

Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Christopher Boyce who settled in Virginia in 1642; Frances Boyce settled in St. Christopher in 1634; Jane Boyce settled in Norfolk Virginia with her husband and eight children in 1823.


Contemporary Notables of the name Boies (post 1700) +

  • Boies Penrose (1860-1921), American Republican politician, Member of Pennsylvania State House of Representatives from Philadelphia County 8th District, 1885-86; Member of Pennsylvania State Senate 6th District, 1887-98 [5]
  • Boies C. Hart Jr., American politician, U.S. Vice Consul in Stuttgart, 1939; Algiers, 1944; Paris, 1944 [6]


  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  3. ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  4. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 1 of 3
  5. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 17) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  6. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 21) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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