Recorded as Rosebotham, Rosbotham, Rosbotten, Rosbottom, Rossbotham, and no doubt others, this is an English locational surname. As a locational surname it has to come from a place but unfortunately no such place has been discovered in any of the known maps and gazetters of the British Isles for the past three centuries. The place name may refer to a "rose covered valley bottom", but is more likely to mean literally the "flat area for horses" or more logically a race track from the Viking and Olde English "hross-bopm". Whilst in modern mythogy the Vikings are regarded as super sailors which indeed they were, they were also very keen horsemen and sportsmen and race tracks abounded throughout the parts of England and Ireland controlled by these people between the 7th and the 11th centuries a.d. As to where this particular surname originated from is unclear, but it was almost certainly the north of England. Lost villages of the British Isles are known to exceed three thousand, and most have provided surnames. In this case we have found early recordings in the surviving registers of the city of London, with a good example being Ralph Rosebotham who married Mary Cooke at St James church, Dukes Place, Westminster, on December 14th 1682, whilst in Yorkshire Ann Rosbottom married Thomas Blinston at Northowram near Halifax, on August 10th 1704.
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