Recorded as Goss, Gosse, Goscling, Gosling (English & French), and Gosse, Gosmann, Gosz, (Austrian, German, Swiss and sometimes Polish), this is a surname of truly ancient origins. It has two possible origins. The first is from the popular pre 7th century word 'gos or got' both meaning meaning good or even god, and found both in England and areas under Germanic influence. There are claims that it went from England to Germany through association with the 6th century Anglo-Saxons, or even through the later Vikings or Normans from the 10th century onwards, and vice versa. The epi-centre of the surname in England from the15th century is claimed to be the West Country, and there are numerous early recordings in the counties of Devon and Cornwall. Examples taken at random include the marriage of John Gosse and Margaret Northcott on September 1559 at St. Mary Arche's, in the city of Exeter, and later the christening of Ann Goss on July 9th 1742 at Bodmin in Cornwall. However it is also possible that in England at least, some Goss(e) families may have an occupational origin. This is from the medieval word gos meaning a goose herd, or a merchant specialising in goose down and feathers. The early name development included Richard Goce of the city of London in the year 1205, whilst in Germany Werner Gosse was recorded in the charters of Pfullendorf in 1355, and five centuries we have the recording of Amalie Friedericke Gosz at Jerusalem, Berlin Stadt, on May 31st 1818. The first recorded spelling of the family name anywhere is believed to be that of Hugo Gosse. This was dated 1202, in the Assize Court Rolls of Lincolnshire, during the reign of King John of England, 1199 - 1216. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop," leading to variants of the original spelling.
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