This is a particularly interesting surname of Olde English and possibly Norse origins, which certainly does not mean what it says. In the pre-Christian era in England (5th century a.d or thereabouts) "Bugg" was a baptismal name of endearment, and probably described a "chubby baby". This origin would appear to be confirmed by Saint Bugg who died in 751 a.d. except that the person in question was a lady, and daughter of Centwine, King of the West Saxons! The derivation is from the word "buggi" originally found in both the early English and Norse-Viking language. It is said that in the medieval period, when Bugg developed as a surname, it described a hobgoblin, one who could call up the spirits in an age when "ghoulies and ghosties, and long leggedy beasties" had a high profile, but evidence for this translation seems at best apocryphal. Curiously the Coats of Arms, of which there are five predominantly have the charge of a water bouchet, which would suggest a connection with the supply of fresh water. The original Coat of Arms was granted to the Bugg's of Essex, this being a blue field, three gold water bouchets, within an ermine border. The crest is a ducal coronet, with the head of a Moor in profile. The crest would suggest victory over the infidel moslem. An example of a church recording is that of John Bugg who married Elizabeth Mitchell on April 26th 1648, at the famous church of St Giles Cripplegate, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Walter Bugge, which was dated 1169, in the pipe rolls of Lincolnshire, during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The church builder" 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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