This name derives from the Hebrew male personal name, Boaz, which in the Old Testament was bore by Ruth's wealthy kinsman who later became her husband. The name was used occasionally by Christians in Britain which seems to have given rise to the surname. The surname is first recorded in Cornwall in the 18th century. Three name bearers recorded in the Dictionary of National Biography between 1763 and 1897 all had banking connections with Penzance. The Boase coat of arms has five bezants or gold coins on a red engrailed chevron indicating connections with the money business or trade. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Henry Boase - partner in Penzance Union Bank which was dated (1763-1827) during the reign of King George IV 1820-1830 Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.