Recorded as Box and Boxe, this interesting surname is English. It derives from the pre 7th Century word "box" as in the box tree, although the origin is open to conjecture. It is probably a locational name for a person who originated from one of the places called Box: as in Gloucestershire or Hertfordshire. However Box wood is very hard, and in medieval times it was used to make a variety of tools. It is therefore possible that for some people at least the name could have been occupational for one who made or worked with tools made of box wood.What is certain is that the surname is one of the earliest to be recorded with Alan de Boxe being listed in the Pipe Rolls of Hertfordshire in 1198, whilst Adam Box is noted in the Calendar of Letter Books of the City of London in 1276. Later examples from the Elizabethan and Stuart period include Martha Box, the daughter of William Box, who was christened in London in 1545, whilst John Box, aged 23 years. was recorded as living in "James Cittee,Virginea" in 1623, making him one of the earliest settlers in the colonies of New England. A grant of arms has the blazon of Azure, a lion between three griffins head's erased, all gold. The first recorded spelling of the family name is believed to be that of William Box. This was dated 1181, in the pipe rolls of Gloucestershire, during the reign of King Henry 11 of England, 1154 - 1189. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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