This interesting surname has two possible origins. Firstly, it may derive from the Welsh "bychan" meaning small and would have originated as nickname for a small person. One, Lewelin Bochan, is noted in the Pipe Rolls of Shropshire (1198). The surname may also be of Scottish locational origin from any of the various districts so called, principally that north of Aberdeen, although there is an obsolete barony Buchquane in Strathore, Fife, a settlement called Buchan in Kirkcudbright, and a hill so called near Minnigaff in Dumfries and Galloway. The component elements of the name are the Welsh "buwch" or the gaelic "baogh" meaning cow plus the diminutive suffix "-an". One, Ricardus de Buchan, was clerk of the bishopric of Aberdeen circa 1207-1208, and william de Buchan, held lands in Aberdeen in 1281. Early recordings of the surname from St. Nicholas church registers, Aberdeen, include; the marriage of Jonat Buchan and Andro Keyth which took place on July 8th 1604; on August 10th 1606, Alexander, son of Andro Buchan was christened; and Margaret Buchan married Hew Andersone on May 16th 1609. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Mariedoc Bohhan, which was dated 1160, Pipe Rolls of Shropshire, during the reign of King Henry 11, "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. 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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