Recorded as Bugdale, Bugdall, Bugdell and originally at least in the city of London, Bowghdale, this is an English locational surname. It almost certainly originates from a now "lost" medieval village whose spelling was similar to one of the surname spellings, although we have not been able to identify the site. This is not unusual as at least three thousand British surnames are known to originate from places so lost that only the survival of the surname gives any clue as to its former existence. It is probable that Bugdale or whatever, was somewhere in the north of England, as the common denominator is the suffix word dale, itself as "dael" of pre 7th century Viking origins meaning steep valley, and exclusive to the north. Locational surnames though are "from" names. That is to say names given to people after they left their original village for whatever reason, and to give them the name of the former home as easy identification. However spelling being at best indifferent and local dialects very thick, soon lead to the creation of "sounds like" forms. In this case the name has been recorded in the city of London since at least Elizabethan times and these include John Bowghdall at St Botolphs Bishopgate, on November 24th 1588, and John Frederick William Bugdale who married Mary Eynon at St Mary Magdalene, Bermondsey, on May 2nd 1814.
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