This well known Yorkshire surname is of Anglo-Saxon and Old Scandinavian origin, and is a locational name deriving from the place called Boothroyd near Wakefield in West Yorkshire. The placename is derived from the Northern Middle English "both(e)", hut, shed, a development of the Old Scandinavian "both, buth", with the Middle English "royd", clearing, from the Olde English pre 7th Century "rod", clearing in woodland. A "both(e)" could be any one of various kinds of temporary shelter, and was typically a cowshed or a herdsman's hut. The term has given the Northern English surname Booth, and the modern vocabulary words "booth" and "bothy". Early examples of the surname Boothroyd include: Adam de Buderude (1296, Yorkshire); Richard de Botherod (1379, ibid.); and Richard Butrode (1379, ibid.). The surname development is illustrated in the following recordings from Yorkshire Church Registers: Butroyd (1552); Botheroid (1587); Bothoroyde (1598); and Botherroyd (1603). The christening of Edmund Boothroyd was recorded in Halifax, Yorkshire, on March 29th 1601. A notable bearer of the name was Benjamin Boothroyd (1768 - 1836), the independent minister and Hebrew scholar, who opened a shop as bookseller and printer in Pontefract, Yorkshire, and published a Hebrew bible, and a "Family Bible", among other works. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John del Botherode, which was dated 1274, in the "Court Rolls of the Manor of Wakefield", Yorkshire, during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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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