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Baptisms or Book of Baptisms

According to Catholic doctrine all individuals must be baptized in order to be saved. Because of this universal need for baptism, these records will include the majority of the people living in the parish, regardless of their social or economic status. Christening records for most French speaking countries may include the following information, depending on the time period when they were created:

  • Given name and surnames of the person being baptized
  • Date of the baptism
  • Date of baptismal entry (usually same as baptism)
  • Date and birthplace of the person being baptized
  • Whether the child being baptized was legitimate or illegitimate
  • Given names, surnames, residence and birthplaces of the parents and grandparents
  • Marital status of the parents
  • Names of the godparents and sometimes their relationship to the child
  • Residence or birthplaces of the godparents
  • Name or signature of the officiating priest

The information included in these records usually follows a specific order; however, it is not uncommon to find the same information in different order. See example below.

(See also French Records Extraction Guide - Chapter 2 : Parish Christening And Civil Birth Entries ​)


French Script Baptism Record.jpg


  1. Marginal Notes
  2. Record Date Phrase
  3. Priest Phrase
  4. Ceremony Phrase
  5. Child Identification Phrase - Birth Date
  6. Child Identification Phrase - Name
  7. Gender and Legitimacy Phrase
  8. Parents Identification Phrase
  9. Paternal Grandparents Identification Phrase
  10. Maternal Grandparents Identification Phrase
  11. Godparents Identification Phrase
  12. Warning Phrase
  13. Certification Phrase

Le seixieme may fut baptisé Bernard fils de Bertran de Bachere

dit Bergés pouquet et de Anne de Salanoube d'Ourcun mariés, les

parrains furent Bernard de Bacheret dit Quisabon et Marie de Quisabon

sa femme tous de Bedous, par moi. Fauconne vicaire​



The sixteenth of May was baptized Bernard, son of Bertran de Bachere

called Bergés pouquet and Anna de Salanoube of Orcun husband and wife, 

with godparents Bernard de Bacherer called Quisabon and Marie de Quisabon

both from Bedous, by me. Vicaire Fauconne​



To learn how to find similar additional documents from different countries and years, click here to visit the FamilySearch catalog.