Bowsare History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Norman Conquest of England in 1066 brought many new words to England from which surnames were formed. Bowsare was one of these new Norman names. It was specifically tailored to its first bearer, who was a person who frequently used the informal Norman greeting beu sire, which means good sir, or fine sir. [1]

Another source presumes the name could have been from the French word "bussiere," and literally meant "dweller in the place planted with bushes." [2]

"Bourcher or Bourchier are not the original form of this great name, which, derived from Boursseres in Burgundy, passed through various stages of transmutation as Berseres, Bursers, Boussers, Burcer, Bowser (as it is given by Duchesne) Burghcher, &c, &c, before it finally reached the one in which it is familiar to us. Urso de Berseres, in 1086, held Senly in Buckinghamshire [3] and Sylvester de Bursers, in 1165, was a tenant of the Honour of Clare, in Suffolk [4]. " [5]

Early Origins of the Bowsare family

The surname Bowsare was first found in Essex. They were originally from Bouchier in Normandy, and arrived in England with Duke William in 1066. [6]

John de Bourchier (d.circa 1330) was an English Judge of the Common Pleas and the earliest ancestor of the family. His son, Robert Bourchier or Boussier was 1st Baron Bourchier (died 1349) and held the position of Lord Chancellor of England, the first layman to hold the post. His son, John Bourchier, 2nd Baron Bourchier (d. 1400), was a soldier and diplomat. [7]

"The eldest of the sons, Henry Earl of Ewe and Essex, Lord Treasurer of England, was grandfather of Henry, the second and last Earl of Essex, a gallant courtier of his day, and captain of Henry the Eighth's body guard, who attended his royal master into France as Lieut.-General of all the Spears: and at the famous tournament which Henry held in the eighth year of his reign, the Earl of Essex, with the King himself, the Duke of Suffolk, and Nicholas Carew, answered all comers. A few years after, his lordship again attended his sovereign to France, and swelled the pageantry upon the field of the Cloth of Gold. The Earl died in consequence of a fall from his horse in 1539, and his barony of Bourchier was eventually inherited by the descendants of his sister Cicely." [8]

Early History of the Bowsare family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bowsare research. Another 107 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1400, 1409, 1400, 1409, 1405, 1467, 1533, 1587, 1654, 1643, 1595, 1660, 1491, 1551, 1535, 1605 and 1589 are included under the topic Early Bowsare History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Bowsare Spelling Variations

A multitude of spelling variations characterize Norman surnames. Many variations occurred because Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England also had a pronounced effect, as did the court languages of Latin and French. Therefore, one person was often referred to by several different spellings in a single lifetime. The various spellings include Bowser, Bouchier, Boucher, Bourchier, Bowesar, Bowsher and many more.

Early Notables of the Bowsare family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John Bourchier, 2nd Baron Bourchier (d. 1400), soldier and diplomat in the service of the crown; Bartholomew Bourchier, 3rd Baron Bourchier (died 1409), member of Parliament, summoned to Parliament the first time 9 September 1400, the year of his father's death, continued to be summoned until 1409, but obtained an exemption from attended in 1405, no records of military service, unlike his father and grandfather; John Bourchier, 2nd Baron Berners (1467-1533), an English soldier, statesman and translator; General Sir...
Another 87 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Bowsare Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Bowsare family to Ireland

Some of the Bowsare family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 47 words (3 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 Bowsare family

Many English families left England, to avoid the chaos of their homeland and migrated to the many British colonies abroad. Although the conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and some travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute, once in the colonies, many of the families prospered and made valuable contributions to the cultures of what would become the United States and Canada. Research into the origins of individual families in North America has revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Bowsare or a variant listed above: Anne Bowser who settled in Nova Scotia in 1774; with her mother Anne and brother Richard; Henry Bowser settled in Washington Maryland in 1798; William Bowser settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1774..



  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. ^ Liber Niger Scutarii ("Black Book of the Exchequer"), containing reports by county on feudal holdings in England in 1166 (reign of Henry II)
  5. ^ 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
  6. ^ 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)
  7. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  8. ^ Burke, John Bernard, The Roll of Battle Abbey. London: Edward Churton, 26, Holles Street, 1848, Print.


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