Bowles DNA Project
Bowles Of Great Britain
See also The Earliest Bowles in England
There appears to have been two separate very early sources of the Bowles surname in England or only two who were wealthy enough to be recorded. The earliest would be the descendants of Ernold de Builli of Yorkshire who accompanied William the Conqueror to England in 1066 and the next appears to have been the Bolle family or families of Kent which date back to the 1200's. Undoubtedly there were other Bole, le Bole, Bolle, Bulls etc. in England even before the Normans arrived but in this era the ability to write, or to employ a clerk who could write for you, was still 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 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.
The Bowles family history goes back into the very early years in Yorkshire, Kent, Lincolnshire, Bedfordshire and Cornwall in particular and for at least centuries in several other counties as well. I've organized my Bowles of England Study by county with separate sections for Cornwall, Wales and Scotland. I am not naking any implication that all of these Bowles were related in some way. Clearly the family name originated independently right across England but with some digging many connections have been found between many of them in their early histories.
The Bowles in England By County
The Bowles of Cornwall (lots of family history there but it's still under development)
The Bowles of Scotland (none so far)
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