Recorded in some twenty spelling forms ranging from the popular Afrikans Botha, and Bote, Bott, Both, Bothe, the Dutch Bode and Bodes, and the patronymics Boden, Bading and sometimes Baden, this is a surname of German origins. It has two possible origins. The first being that it is a development of the pre 7th century personal name 'Botho' meaning a messenger, itself from the even earlier word 'buo' meaning to announce. The second possibility is that in the surname spelling as Baden, and possibly also in some instances of Bohden and Boden, the name is locational from the former city state of Baden, and possibly the royal house of Baden. This is proved by the early recording of Rutschmann von Baden, in the charters of Obereggenen, Mulheim, in the year 1398. For many centuries upto quite recently Germany was a divided country, and one of many specific dialects, some so strong as to virtually constitute separate languages. An understanding of this situation helps the reader to understand why for instance such disimilar names as Both and Bading are from the same origins. Early examples of the surname recordings incude Tideric Bote of Koln in the year 1150, and Kountz die Boten of Konigsbach in 1344. A later recording is that of Frederich Botha, the son of Michael Botha, at Gangenheim, Sachsen-Coburg-Gotha, on May 4th 1653, and Veltun Bote, at Feudinge, Westfalen on July 1st 1574. The Botha's have been established and prominent in South Africa since 1672, where the surname is of Dutch-Frisian origins.
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