Recorded in a wide variety off spellings including Bagra, Bagrie, Baigrie, Beagrie, and Begrie, this is a surname of two possible Scottish origins. In both cases the name is locational. The first is from the area now known as 'The lands of Balgray' in the former county of Angus, but in earlier times spelt as Bagra and Bagro, whilst the second is from Bagra, near Banff. Locational surnames are often 'from' names. That is to say names given to people after they left their original homes and moved elsewhere. It was then, and it remains so even in the 20th century, that one of the best way to identify a stranger is to call him, or sometimes her, by the name of the place from whence they came. In this case early examples of the surname recording include: John Balgray, given as being the 'Notary Public' at Aberdeen in 1577, whilst John Bagray was a baker in Edinburgh in 1625. Other recordings include: Jean Bagra, the 'relict' of John Brodie of Portsoy, Aberdeen, in 1791, and more recently Watt Bagrie of Ythan, a soldier of the First World war (1914 - 1919).
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