From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Boyer (French pronunciation: ​[bwaje]) is a French surname.[1] In rarer cases, it can be a corruption or deliberate alteration of other names.

Repartition and etymology[edit]

Boyer is a personal name from France, found traditionally along the Mediterranean Sea (Provence, Languedoc), the Rhône valley, Auvergne, Limousin, Périgord and more generally in the Southwest of France. Nevertheless, it has been existing further north since a long time. There are two variant spellings centered precisely : Boyé (southwest) and Bouyer (Loire-Atlantique, Charente-Maritime).[2]

It ranks 50th out of the most common surnames in France and 265 in Québec.[3]

Like many other surnames, it used to be a nickname describing somebody's job in that case : "bullock driver", "cowherd", that is to say Bouvier in common French.[4][5] It derives mainly from the Occitan buòu "ox", with the suffix -iar / -ier, frenchified phonetically or, further north, sometimes from a variant form in dialectal French bô, bou "ox" corresponding to common French bœuf with the suffix -ier. In French, the modern spelling -oyer [waje] avoid the confusion between -oi-er [wae] and -oier [waje].

In rarer cases, it can be a corruption or deliberate alteration of several other names :

  1. In England, may come from bowyer, meaning "bow maker" or "bow seller." [6]
  2. In Turkish, the name may come from "boy-er", "boy" meaning "size" or "stature" and "er" meaning "man" or "soldier."
  3. It can also be a corruption or deliberate alteration of several German names like Bayer or Bauer.

People with the surname[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Albert Dauzat, Noms et prénoms de France, Librairie Larousse 1980, édition revue et commentée par Marie-Thérèse Morlet. p. 62a Bouvier.
  2. ^ Repartition of the surname Boyer in France according to the number of births (Nb) and the Départements (n°) [1]
  3. ^ 55th according to after the phone book et 34th according to between 1891 and 1990
  4. ^ Dauzat 62a
  5. ^ Marie-Thérèse Morlet, Dictionnaire étymologique des noms de famille, Perrin 1997, article Bouvier, p.134 ; ISBN 2-262-01350-0
  6. ^ -- English variant