This medieval surname has three suggested origins. The first being an occupational name for a maker of boards and tables, and deriving from the Olde English pre 7th Century 'bord', a plank of wood. The second origin probably derives from the Olde French 'bordier', and describes one who lives in a tenanted cottage, although to confuse the origin this may also be a cottage built of 'boards'. The third is pure theory, and may be a derivation of the French 'bourdeour', a jester or buffoon! The suffix 'man(n)' is essentially Anglo-Saxon, and probably a form of endearment. However it cannot be argued that it has a variety of meanings which include 'friend, servant or relative'. As people living in cottages were unlikely to have servants, the probable meaning in this case is 'relative of Board'. Examples of the earliest recordings include Robert le Bordere in the 1296 Subsidy Rolls of Sussex, Richard Bordwreght in the 1327 occupation lists of London, and William Bordmakere in the 1356 Guild Rolls of Gloucester. Later church recordings include Barbara Bordman, christened at St Botolphs without Aldgate, London, on March 6th 1607, whilst on June 1st 1622 William Ivat married Anne Boardman in London by civil license. The coat of arms has the blazon of silver, a green chevron bordered in red, and the crest of lion sejant, collared in gold The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of George Bordman, which was dated 1588, recorded in the London Marriage Licence Register, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st, known as 'Good Queen Bess', 1558 - 1603. 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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