Bowsay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The history of the Bowsay family name begins after the Norman Conquest of 1066. They lived at the parish of Bussey in Hereford.  The name, however, is a reference to the family's former place of residence, Bouce, in Orne, Normandy. 
Another source disagrees. The Duchess of Cleveland in her work "The Battle Abbey Roll," notes the family likely came from "Buci, in Normandy. Robert de Buci held a great barony in Northamptonshire and Leicestershire in 1086 : but left no heir save a daughter, married to Ralph Basset, Justiciary of England under Henry I. " 
Early Origins of the Bowsay family
The surname Bowsay was first found in Leicestershire at Wyfordby, a parish, in the union of Melton-Mowbray, hundred of Framland. "This place, at the Conquest, was granted to Roger de Bussy, Baron of Tickhill, in the county of York." 
"Jordan de Bussi, is mentioned in the time of Stephen, when he held his uncle Walter Espec's castle of Werke, 'and gallantly repulsed the attack of William Fitz Duncan, King of Scots.' Of his descendants I am unable to find any account, except that they held of Mowbray in the thirteenth century." 
"The first Jordan de Bussy, called, in the pedigree, the son of Lambert, founded a great Lincolnshire house, that lasted till the end of Queen Elizabeth's reign. There exists no county history to blazon their deeds of arms or count up their forfeitures: we are not informed on which side they fought during the Barons' War, or whether they wore the colours of York or Lancaster. " 
"Dom. Hugh de Buscy" occurs in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1272 as a landowner in Northumberland, Norfolk, Lincoln, Suffolk and Sussex; and may have been the father of Hugh de Bowcy, Sheriff of Surrey and Sussex in 1340. " 
Early History of the Bowsay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bowsay research. Another 60 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1399, 1379, 1381, 1391, 1388, 1393, 1394, 1397 and 1397 are included under the topic Early Bowsay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Bowsay Spelling Variations
Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. When the Normans became the ruling people of England in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Bussey, Busse, Bushe, Boosie, Boosey, Bowsey, Busey and many more.
Early Notables of the Bowsay family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir John Bussy (d. 1399), Speaker of the House of Commons and Sheriff of Lincoln in 1379, 1381, and 1391. "He was first chosen a knight of the shire for Lincoln in 1388, and continued to sit for that county during the remaining parliaments of Richard II's reign. He was three times elected speaker, first by the parliament of 1393-1394, and afterwards by...
Another 70 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Bowsay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Bowsay family
For many English families, the political and religious disarray that plagued their homeland made the frontiers of the New World an attractive prospect. Thousands migrated, aboard cramped disease-ridden ships. They arrived sick, poor, and hungry, but were welcomed in many cases with far greater opportunity than at home in England. Many of these hardy settlers went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Among early immigrants bearing the name Bowsay or a variant listed above were: George Bussey who settled in Virginia in 1637; Thomas Bussey settled in Philadelphia in 1774; Roger Bushe settled in Virginia in 1654; Elizabeth Bussie settled in Virginia in 1649.
- Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
- 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)
- Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
- 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
- Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.