Parish registers are the most important databases of previous centuries. The major events in a person's life were written down in the parish registers. At a baptism, marriage or death, the date and family relations were recorded in a deed. You will find more information in the deeds of the 19th century than in the first deeds of the 16th or 17th century.
Baptism registers contain the first and last name of the baptised person, the date of birth and/or the date of baptism, and sometimes the time of birth. The name of the father and mother, godfather and godmother are almost always also listed in the deed. Sometimes the age of the parents and godparents or the place they came from are also mentioned. If the child was a foundling or if the parents were not married, this is certainly mentioned in the deed. Some deeds have more very interesting information.
A marriage certificate states the date of marriage and the first and last names of the marriage partners and witnesses. Most deeds also mention the names of the parents. Sometimes the place they came from, their age or date of birth are mentioned. In the 16th century, betrothals were also carefully recorded. If the bride or groom were widows or widowers or if they were (from afar) related to each other, this is usually also mentioned in the deed.
Death or burial certificate
A death or burial certificate contains the name and surname of the deceased and date of death and/or burial. The age is almost always given. In the case of children, the name of the parents is given. In adults, the name of the partner is given. Sometimes the exact time of death or cause of death is also given. Some parish priests noted in the deed whether funeral expenses had been paid or not.