Bowles DNA Project
The Bowles of Canada and their Roots in Ireland and Great Britain

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The Bowles of England

Back to The Bowles of Great Britain

See also The Earliest Bowles in England

Undoubtedly there were Bole, le Bole, Bolle, Bulls etc. in England even before the Normans arrived who became Bowles and variants of that name over time but in that era the ability to write, or to employ a clerk who could write for you, was a privilege of the wealthy, the nobility and royalty and those were the only people whose names have been recorded by history.  While all the other folk continued to have baptisms, marriages and funerals there were no church registers yet to record the events.  They did not hold their own land, there was no national registration for taxation or voting and few other records of names needed to be kept so their role in our family history has been lost.

I've identified three very early sources of the Bowles surname in England who were wealthy enough to be recorded.  The earliest would be The 'de Boeles' who settled in Bedfordshire in the 1100's.  From Bouelles, Normandy they are believed to have arrived with William the Conqueror's invasion of England in 1066 and were soon settled throughout England.  In Bedfordshire I also found descendants of The de Busli Family of Yorkshire in the 1100's.  Roger de Busli was one of William's strongest supporters and received a huge grant of land in Yorkshire for that support.  While Roger's line did end in the next generation, his brother Ernold de Builli's descendants certainly continued on.  I've also identified a Bolle family or families in Kent which date back to the 1200's.

 The Bowles family history goes back into the very early years in Yorkshire, Kent, Shropshire, Oxfordshire, Lincolnshire, Bedfordshire and Essex in particular and for at least several centuries in other counties as well.  Clearly the family name originated independently right across England but after a lot of digging some connections have been found between many of them.

The Bowles in England By County

The Bowles of Bedfordshire

The Bowles of Berkshire

The Bowles of The Duchy of Cornwall

The Bowles of Derbyshire

The Boles of Devonshire

The Bowles of Essex

The Bowles of Hertfordshire

The Bowles of Kent and The Bowles in the African Trade to the Americas

The Bowles of Lancashire

The Bowles of Lincolnshire

The Bowles of London and Middlesex

The Bowles of Norfolk and Suffolk

The Bowles of Nottinghamshire

The Bowles of Oxfordshire

The Bowles of Shropshire

The Bowles of Somerset

The Bowles of Staffordshire

The Bowles of Surrey

The Bowles of Sussex

The Bowles of Wiltshire

The Bowles of Worcestershire

The Bowles of Yorkshire


This site was last updated 12/29/19