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The Family

Making Sense of Latin Documents for Family and Local Historians

Brooke Westcott

A4, 84 pages, ISBN: 978-1-906280-45-1

The farther back your research takes you, the more likely you are to come across documents partially or wholly in Latin. Index entries and catalogue descriptions vary in completeness, and it can be dispiriting sometimes to find that a document contains no more information than its catalogue entry. But if you don't go through it word for word you will always wonder whether something vital was hidden in there somewhere.

The aim of this book is to act as a crib; to set out and translate the basic form of the most useful and most common Latin documents, enabling the genealogist to get the most out of them. It is not a guide to reading old handwriting or teaching yourself Latin, although, unfortunately, you need to be reasonably competent in both of these to understand Latin documents.

Examples of documents covered in this book include Parish Registers, Wills, Probates, Inventories, Intestacy, Citations, Interrogatories, Definitive Sentences or Final Decrees, Excommunication, Writs, Inquisitions Post Mortem, Land Deeds, Final Concords, Recovery of Seisin, and Copyholds and Surrenders.

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