Recorded in several spelling forms including Baus, Bauser, Bausere, Bausmann, and Bausor, this is a German occupational surname. It derives from the ancient word 'baus' meaning a swelling, and by tranposition was used to denote a pillow or bolster, and thus a maker or supplier of such articles of bedding. Before medieval times or roughly the 12th century, bedding was primitive in the extreme, rarely more than a rug or blanket, and the pillow if one existed at all, was often a log. The coming of glass and a general relaxing of tension in many parts of Europe at this time, brought changes amongst the wealthy, with a move from castles to more comfortable dwellings, and attempts to provide a softer life style. This change of domesticity was also accelerated by the famous Crusades, when returning warriors brought with them designs from the Middle East, where the people were often more advanced in textile manufacture. Occupational surnames were amongst the first to be created, but they were not necessarliy hereditary. Only when a son followed in his fathers footsteps did the name become 'fixed', and only then after the fourteenth century. Early examples of the surname recording taken from authentic registers and charters of the period include: in 1293 Nicholas Busere of Neideringelheim, and in 1454 Pfaff Bauzer of Rommelshausen. Later examples are those of Otto Bausmann of Kaub, and in 1567 Konrad Bausenhardt of Eblingen. Over the centuries surnames have rarely remained in the same spelling. Local dialects and erratic spelling has ensured that even as recently as the late 19th century surnames continued to change, sometimes even within the same family!
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