Recorded in several spellings including Boraston, Boreston, Boriston, Burrostan and probably others, this is an English surname. It is locational from a village called Boraston in the county of Devonshire. The place itself is first recorded in the year 1188 a.d. as Bureston, and the meaning is believed to be the place (tun) of the tenants, from the Olde English pre 7th century 'gebur-tuna'. However this translation is conjecture, because it is difficult to see how in a feudal system it would be allowed for a place to be called after 'tenants' rather than the actual landlord. Locational names such as this surname are 'from' names. That is to say a surname given to somebody after they left their original homes to move somewhere else. The easiest way to identify such a stranger was to call him or sometimes her, by the name of the place from whence they came. Spelling generally being at best erratic, and local dialects very thick, soon lead to the development of 'sounds like' spellings. In this case the name is not recorded in Devon at all, but is widely recorded in the diocese of Greater London. Examples from there include Richard Boraston who married Francis Leader at St Botolphs Bishopgate, on July 13th 1672, and Thomas Burrostan who was christened at St Brides Fleet Street, on October 26th 1727.
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