There are at least two possible explanations for the this interesting and extremely rare surname. The first is Olde English pre 7th century and like 'Bodie and Body' a patronymic or diminutive development of 'Boda', a word which originally described a pre-medieval herald or messenger, or possibly a large man (bodig). The second possible origin is from the Spanish 'bodas' - a nickname. 'Bodas' as a surname, means literally 'the wedding vows', and as such is surely one of the most unusual names anywhere. One can only assume that it was satirical, perhaps for somebody who failed to meet up to societies requirements in respect of the wedding vows. In view of the cultural, political and religious differences between Britain and Spain from the 14th century onwards, it has to be said that this origin is at best unlikely, but nethertheless one Margaret Bodas is recorded at Swillington, Yorkshire, on October 8th 1611, when she married Robertus Dawson. Other and later recordings include Joseph Boddis, son of Joseph and Mary Boddis, christened at Sundbury on Thames on February 18th 1787, and in Lancashire on March 26th 1843, William Boddice and his wife Mary were recorded at the village church of Peel by Bolton. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Bodise, which was dated November 20th 1603, christened at St Mary Whitechapel, London, during the reign of King James 1 of England and V1 of Scotland, 1603 - 1625. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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