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Samuel Boar/Boast

Samuel Boart/Boast 1724-?

Temperance Basse 1752-1839


meaning and origins

This is one of those nickname surnames and so it's pretty obvious what it means.  There are three possible etymological sources - Middle English bost which means bragging or Middle High German boese or Middle Low German bose meaning reckless and daring.  So there's always a plus and a minus it seems.


In our own family tree the variations are Boart, Beast, Beart, Best, Bast, Bass(e) - take your pick, much of it to do with how you interpret old handwriting. Officially the variants for Boast are Bost and Boost

distribution in England and Wales

Predominantly Norfolk which makes sense.

It's not a very common name.



norwich cathedral.jpg
Norwich - St. James with Pockthorpe and Catton

Because this line 'starts' back in the eighteenth century we do not, so far have a long line.  And it took a while to find the three we have, because of that surname.  By the time the earliest known holder of the name - Temperance, wife of Robert Mollett senior, it had been changed to Basse (I think) on the marriage record.  But then Temperance couldn't write, so I guess the cleric just interpreted.  It is difficult as well to work out whether the earlier spellings of the name are Boast or Boart.  Occasionally the o gets changed to an e as well.  But I'm going with Boast, because there seem to be quite a few of them with that surname all clustered around the parish of St James with Pockthorpe on the Eastern edge

of Norwich.   So the name is a bit of a problem.

I also have no idea what kind of people the Boasts were.  I can find no other records but I'm guessing they were not wealthy as Temperance could not write.  And this in spite of the fact that the earliest known Boast or Boart was married in Norwich Cathedral - which you can see in the distance of my chosen tree portrait. Not much of a tree - just a hint of a large one in the foreground, with lots of scattered bushes and trees beyond - other Boasts who must be related in some way.  The photograph is taken from Mousehold Heath which is on the edge of the St. James parish.  So this is most probably a view our ancestors may well have enjoyed.

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