Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A new-to-me resource for central European genealogy

A new resource was pointed out to me last night, a godsend for anyone searching central European parish registers. Compiled by Bartholomew Szokolszky and published in 1922, Annyakönyvvezetők szótára [Registrar’s dictionary] is 141 pages of terms used in church registers, each term being given in Hungarian, Slovak, German, and Latin.

There are four chapters, each for a different class of vocabulary. Words are in alphabetical order of the Hungarian term within each chapter. The chapters are: occupations, causes of death, first names, and the most common terms and phrases used in the registers.

The registrar’s dictionary is available online in PDF format, courtesy of Verejná knižnica Jána Bocatia [John Bocatia Public Library] in Košice, Slovakia, at . I immediately put it to work, looking up a cause of death in Hungarian for which I could determine only some of the letters. With the PDF format, I could search on a partial word. After a few tries (“is that a letter o, or an a?”) I found the phrase.

I owe a HUGE “d’akujem pekne” [thank you so much!] to Ladislav Rosival for telling me about this resource.