When exploring records of certain educational institutions, examining memorials and tombstones and exploring Catholic records, it's likely that you're going to run across some Latin. We've previously put together a guide to some of the Latin terms you might encounter, along with their English translations. But, what if the document you're examining has abbreviations that you don't recognize, that might not even be Latin at all?

For common Latin terms, check out this guide

To help you understand just what it is you're looking at, we've created this short guide to common Latin abbreviations in genealogical records. If there's anything you'd like us to add, or an abbreviation that has you stumped, let us know in the comments!

  • A.A.S - Anno aetatis suae (In the year of his/her age)
  • A.M.D.G. - Ad maiorem Dei gloriam (To the greater glory of God)
  • Aet. - Aetas/Aetatis (Age/at the age of)
  • An. - Annus (Yea)
  • Ann. - Anni (Years)
  • Ben. - Bendictus (Blessed)
  • Ch. - Confirmati (Confirmed)
  • Civit. - Civitas (City)
  • Coione. - Communione (Communion)
  • Dnus - Dominus (Lord/Sir/Mr.)
  • DS - Deus (God)
  • dspm - Decessit sine prole malus (Died without male offspring)
  • dspl - Decessit sine prole legitima (Died without legitimate offspring)
  • dsp - Decessit sine prole (Died without offspring)
  • dsps - Decessit sine prole superstita (Died without surviving offspring)
  • Et Seq. - Et sequens (And the following)
  • Et seqq. - Et Sequentian (And the following (pl.))
  • Et ux. - Et uxor (And wife)
  • HI - Hic iacet (Here lies - sometimes will be HJ for Hic jacet)
  • Ign. - Ignotus (Unknown)
  • Infraptum - Infrascriptum (Written below)
  • J. - Matrimonius Juncti (Joined in marriage)
  • Litma - Legitima (Lawful)
  • msp - Mortuus sine prole (Died without offspring)
  • Na - Natus/nata (Born)
  • Ob. - Obiit (Died)
  • Omn. - Omnes (All)
  • P - Prima Vice Communicates (First Communion)
  • Pact. - Pactum (Agreement)
  • Pr - Pater (Father)
  • Q - Quondam (The deceased)
  • Q.E. - Quod est ('Which is')
  • S. - Sine (Without)
  • SP/SS - Susceptores (Sponsors/godparents)
  • V - Vide (See)
  • Vid. - Vidua (Widow)
  • Viz. - Videlicet (Namely)

If the abbreviation you're seeking isn't listed above, it could either mean it isn't Latin, or it doesn't occur frequently. For a longer list of abbreviations in the Catholic church (from common to the obscure), visit this site. If you're ready to dive into Catholic records, visit the Catholic Heritage Archive today.

If you have any questions or comments about the list above, let us know in the comments!

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