The surname BOOLS was a nickname derived from 'the bull', a name given to one with a fierce disposition or one with thickset proportions, which would explain the temperament and size of the original bearer of the sobriquet. Surnames having a derivation from nicknames form the broadest and most miscellaneous class of surnames, encompassing many different types of origin. The most typical classes refer adjectivally to the general physical aspect of the person concerned, or to his character. Many nicknames refer to a man's size or height, while others make reference to a favoured article of clothing or style of dress. Many surnames derived from the names of animals and birds. In the Middle Ages ideas were held about the characters of other living creatures, based on observation, and these associations were reflected and reinforced by large bodies of folk tales featuring animals behaving as humans. Early records of the name mention Wulfwin Bule who was recorded in Hampshire in the year 1170, and Hulle le Bule appears in County Surrey in the year 1202. William Bulle was documented in the year 1214 and William le Bole of the County of Cambridgeshire in 1273. Thomas Bools of County Somerset, was recorded during the reign of Edward III. (1327-1377) and John le Bole of the County of Somerset was documented in the year 1377. Willelmus Bulle of Yorkshire was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379.
At first the coat of arms was a practical matter which served a function on the battlefield and in tournaments. With his helmet covering his face, and armour encasing the knight from head to foot, the only means of identification for his followers, was the insignia painted on his shield, and embroidered on his surcoat, the draped and flowing garment worn over the armour.
Later instances of the name include Robert Bull and Grace Paget who were married in London in 1550.
Alban Thomas Bull was baptised at St. James's, Clerkenwell, London in 1588.
The associated arms are recorded in Burkes General Armory.
Ulster King of Arms in 1884.