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Our 2,745 members have registered
2,397 study surnames with us
and a further 6,089 variant names.

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About the study

Research into the BOGG family name started in 1972 after my mother handed me the family bible following the death of my father, Francis BOGG. The bible, which was presented to my grandfather, Henry BOGG, in 1871 by the Wesleyan Sunday School in Thorton le Fen, Lincs, contained details of my family from 1894 onwards. I became a member of the Guild of One-Name Studies in 1990.

Variant names

There are 4 variants to the main name of BOGG that I have registered - BOG, BOGGE, BOGGS and BOGS. During my research I have 'found' other variants which have appeared in the many documents that have been examined, eg. parish registers, registered BMD and copies of wills, to name but a few.

Name origin

According to Reaney & Wilson'€™s Dictionary of English Surnames, the BOGG surname means "€œbold, proud, saucy"€ or "€œDweller by the bog"€. The BOGGS surname has been interpreted to mean "€œinclined to bluster or brag, puffed up, bold"€. I personally am inclined to believe the BOGG surname originated for people who lived near a bog or marshy area and who carried water from these places to the local villages, as described in the coat of arms for a Sir James BOGG, who was knighted in 1609.

Name frequency

From the index of the 1881 census produced by the Church of Latter Day Saints, there were only 440 BOGG/BOGs recorded in that census throughout the whole of England, Wales and Scotland.

According to the ONS database there were 586 BOGGs, 11 BOGs and 93 BOGGS as of September 2002. This total (of 690) gives a frequency of 1 in 81,014 or 0.00123% of the population in 2002.

Distribution of the name

In the 1881 census, the most populous counties for the BOGG/BOG surnames were Lincolnshire (112 - 25.5%), East Riding of Yorkshire (97 - 22.0%), North Riding of Yorkshire (51 - 11.6%) and Lancashire (42 - 9.5%). Other counties included the West Riding of Yorkshire (8.4%), Surrey/Middlesex/Kent (12.3%) and Scotland (3.4%).


All the registered births, marriages and deaths for the BOGG and variants surnames have been extracted from the General Register Offices indexes for England and Wales (since 1837). It is hoped one day to upload these details onto Guild web site.

Other details that have also been extracted and indexed includes the International Genealogical Index (IGI), other census returns, parish registers, burial records, wills and grants of probate since 1858 in England and Wales. Pedigrees have been submitted and compiled from information provided by other BOGG researchers throughout the world, some of which have been connected to my own family tree but there are many that have not (so far!).


I have recently submitted my DNA to the Family Tree DNA organisation and have received the results (most of which are far too technical for me to understand!). I have not, as yet, created my own DNA project website as the BOGG name is currently attached to another site (for BOGGS). I am hoping, however, to be able to match my DNA with other male BOGGs, in the near future, to see if there is any connection between our respective families.