This name is of English locational origin from a place thus called in Essex, or from Boreham Wood (Hertfordshire) or Boreham Street (Sussex). The name in all cases derives from the Olde English 'bor', the base of the Olde English 'borlice' meaning 'excellent' or 'elevated', here used in the transferred sense of 'height' or 'hill', plus 'ham' an enclosure or homestead. Hence 'the homestead on the hill'. The surname from this source is first recorded in the latter half of the 13th century (see below). One Thomas de (of) Borham, Co. Suffolk, and a Hernet de Boreham, Co. Northampton are recorded in the Hundred Rolls of those counties c.1273. John Boram was rector of Newton (Norfolk) in 1398 and in 1745 the marriage of Samuel Boreham and Mary Phillips is recorded in St. James' Church Registers, Clerkenwell, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Harvey de Borham. which was dated 1273, in the Hundred Rolls of Essex. 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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