This interesting and long-established surname is of early medieval English origin, and is an occupational name for a maker of (leather) bottles, deriving from the Old French "bouteille", Middle English "botel", with the agent suffix "-er". In its original sense "a man who has to do with", the "-er" designates persons according to their profession or occupation. Job-descriptive surnames initially denoted the actual occupation of the namebearer, and later became hereditary. One William le Botilier and Hugo le Botyler were recorded respectively in the 1273 Hundred Rolls of Nottinghamshire and Cambridgeshie, and a Sarra le Bottler was noted in the 1332 Subsidy Rolls of Warwickshire. A quotation from the Medieval Miracle Plays pertaining to Yorkshire reads, "the pouchemakers, botellers, and capmakers acted together in the York Plays", suggesting that the bottles were made of leather, a material common to all the above craftsmen. Botler may, however, also be a variant of Butler, itself an occupational name for a wine steward, usually the chief servant of a medieval household, though in royal households the title frequently denoted an officer of high rank and responsibility only nominally concerned with the supply of wine. On April 25th 1575, Henry Botler was entered in the Marriage Register of St. Thomas the Apostle, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard le Botiler, which was dated 1272, in the "Hundred Rolls of Buckinghamshire", 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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