Names and Naming Practices
in the
Registers of the Church of St. Mary's, Dymock

(Gloucestershire, England: 1538-1600/1)

by

Mari ingen Briain meic Donnchada (Kathleen M. O'Brien)


© 1998-2009 Kathleen M. O'Brien, All rights reserved.
Version 1.4, updated 03 October 2009


Introduction

Beginning in 1538, parish registers in England were recorded on loose sheets. These are referred to as the paper register. In 1598, the parishes were required to copy the entries from their paper registers into a bound book. These are referred to as the parchment register. Very few paper registers survive today.

The Church of St. Marys in Dymock is one of the few cases where both the paper and parchment registers survive today. This article is based on the transcription of these registers published in Gray, Irvine and J. E. Gethyn-Jones, editors, The Registers of the Church of St. Mary's, Dymock, 1538-1790 (The Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society, 1960). In this work, the editors transcribed directly from the paper register except for instances where the paper register had deteriorated to illegibility. In those instances, the editors transcribed from the parchment register and footnoted that they had done so. Additionally, they footnoted any instance where the paper and parchment registers did not agree.

The advantage to this transcription method is that the spellings that appear in this document can therefore be dated with certainty to the date of the entry, if the entry contains no footnote that a section of it has been transcribed from the parchment register.

An additional insight we are given is that because the first page of the paper register has been lost (and so those entries are transcribed from the parchment register), we can see the "modernized" spellings that were used when the paper register was transcribed to the parchment register in 1598. Annes became Agnes, etc. In the few instances where I can only date a spelling to the parchment register, I have set the date of that spelling to 1598.

Note: Since the new year used to begin on March 25th, the notation 1600/1 indicates the portion of the year that we know as 1601, but was considered 1600 at that time.

At this time, this article includes only given names. Surnames, locations, and titles will be included in a future version of this article.



Bibliography

Gray, Irvine and J. E. Gethyn-Jones, editors, The Registers of the Church of St. Mary's, Dymock, 1538-1790 (The Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society, 1960).


Medieval Scotland | Medieval Names Archive | Names in Chesham, 1538-1600/1


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