In this full-day course with Lynn Serafinn, learn how to interpret and translate information found in Italian genealogical records. In this practical, hands-on workshop, work from print-outs of a variety of records spanning nearly four centuries, from the mid-1500s to the early 20th century. While the primary focus will be on parish records, Lynn also looks at a few civil and military records from the 19th and 20th centuries.
Lynn guides you through the many idiosyncrasies of Italian records, including Latinisations, spelling variations, abbreviations/shorthand and unusual dating conventions. During the day, she explains:
- How to recognise clues about marriages, deaths, church dispensations and alternate surnames (‘soprannomi’), so you can extract as much information as possible from a single document;
- How to recognise honourifics;
- How to find clues about your ancestor’s origins or profession;
- How to interpret causes of death.
The day is organised to give you a lot of practice making sense of challenging, hand-written documents, to bolster your confidence when doing your own research. Time-permitting, you may also have a chance to work with a partner to analyse one of your own Italian documents.
1. You can bring a document for analysis during the day, if you wish. Please make sure it is a clearly legible copy if you don’t have the original document.
2. It’s not essential that you speak either Italian or Latin. However, having some basic familiarity with either language could be helpful.
3. In 2018, Lynn delivered two half-day courses at the SoG: ‘Tracing Your Italian Ancestry – Fundamentals and Fun Stuff’ (repeating 23 March 2019) and ‘Reading and Understanding Italian Genealogical Records’. If you missed them, this is a chance to catch up. If you attended the latter workshop last year, feel free to come along again. This full-day version covers more details and looks at many new records.
With Lynn Serafinn
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