There are no less that sixteen recorded spellings of this ancient name, which despite its "french" appearance is in fact of Anglo-Saxon origin. It was originally a compound personal name comprising the elements of "Burgh" and "heard" which translates as "Fortress-Hard". The name is well recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 as Burchardus, Burkart, Burchart and Burcadus, however the Normans who originally "lifted" the name from the Saxons also introduced it as Bouchart, which was "anglicized to Bocard. The recordings of the spelling as "Bouchard" suggest that this is a later (Huguenot) introduction following the "Purge" of 1628 in France. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Boushard (as spelt). which was dated 1635, Married, Margaret Jackson at St. Brides, London. during the reign of King Charles I, The Martyr, 1625 - 1649. 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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