Genealogical Glossary

List of Words Used in Genealogical Records

See this page in Spanish. Véase esta página en español.

Click on each letter to see the list of genealogical terms. Click on the underlined terms to read the Spanish definition of the word taken from the online version of the Diccionario de la Real Academia Española 22a. edición.


A - B - C - D - E - F - G - H - I - J - L - M - N - O - P - Q - R - S - T - U - V - Y - Z - Ra​cial Terminology



ONLINE DICTIONARIES

Because language is constantly changing and many words used in old records could have a different meaning from the common meaning used today, dictionaries from earlier years or centuries are a great resource for the researchers. The Real Academia Española dictionaries are a useful resource, be sure to click on the "word search" icon () to get started.

The Nuevo tesoro lexicográfico de la lengua española contains definitions of words with respect to the century.

Letter A

abad : Abbot, rector of a parish (in some provinces).

abadengo : Abbey

abadía : Abbey
 
abertura : Act of publicizing a will.
 
ab intestato : (Latin) Without a will.

abogado : Lawyer
 
abolengo : Distinguished ancestry or line.

abrirse las velaciones : Begin the Church-allowed time to hold vigil for the dead.

abril : April

absceso : Abscess

abuela : Grandmother
 
abuelastro : Step-grandparent

abuelo : Grandfather; ancestor; forefather; old person

abuelos : Grandparents

aceptación : Acceptance; approval; approbation
 
acotación : A note in the margin of a document.
 
acotara. To testify, to ensure something in the faith of a mediator or of a document. b. To quote texts or authorities.

acre : Acre

acta : Document; record; official act

acuerdo : Agreement

adelantado : Colonial title used for the following: governor of a frontier province, supreme justice of the kingdom, captain general in times of war; a discoverer, founder; pacifier of Indian lands

administración : Administration
 
adnado(a) : See hijastro.
 
adopción : Action of adopting; an individual legally taking as a child someone who is not biologically related to him or her.

adoptado(a) : Adopted
 
ad pias causas : (Latin) A will left to the Church, the poor, or the intercessory prayers for the dead or good of the soul. Latin expression that means alms for the poor, schools, churches, etc., stipulated in a will.
 
adulterino(a) : Coming from adultery.

adulterio : Adultery, violation of the marriage vows

adúltero(a) : Adulterer

adviento : Advent, the four weeks preceding Christmas

adyacente : Adjoining

afinidad : Relation by marriage
 
agnacióna. Blood relationship between members of the paternal line. b. Order to succeed in the connections when the founder calls their descendants from man to man.
 
agnado(a) : Relatives that are linked by blood as the line of a common ancestor is traced from man to man.

agosto : August

agregación : Addition; attachment; appointment; assignment
 
agregadoa. Person that occupies someone else's house or property, generally rural, inhabited in exchange for small jobs, rent or nothing (free). b. In Colombia, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico, it is a synonym of arrimado.

agricultor : Farmer
 
ahí/allí : There
 
ahijado(a) : Person that is made a godparent during a baby's christening.
 
ahogamiento : Drowning

ajuste : Settlement; arrangement; hiring

alabardero : Spanish Royal Guard

albacea : Executor of a will

albañil : Stonemason

albino : Mixture of Spanish and Morisco blood

alcalde : Mayor; magistrate; official to whom the mayor delegates power over a section of the city.

alcalde constitucional : Local magistrate during nineteenth century.

alcalde mayor : Justice of the peace; the administrative and judicial magistrate of a province or district (in some cases the Corregidor exercised this function); local magistrate.

alcalde ordinario : Mayor, the highest municipal office of a town council or municipal district.

alcalde pedáneo : Junior judge
 
alcurnia : Ancestry or family line, especially the nobility.

aldea : Village, hamlet

alemán(a) : German

alfarero(a) : Potter

alférez : Ensign; army officer lower than lieutenant, sub-lieutenant; in Bolivia and Peru a municipal office in the Indian villages

algodón : Cotton

alguacil(a) : Constable, bailiff, officer who carries out the orders of the alcalde; minister of justice who executes the orders of the justices and tribunals.

algún(o, a) : Some, someone
 
alianzaa. Connection or relationship by marriage. b. Marriage. c. Marriage or betrothal ring.

alma : Soul; inhabitant; person

almoneda : Public auction; clearance sale
 
alnado(a) : Synonym of hijastro.

alquería : Hamlet

alquiler : Rent, renta

alteza : An honorary title given to the kings, princes, and officials of the high court (audiencia) and to some of the royal councils, highness

altitud : Altitude

alto(a) : High, tall

altura : Height

allá : There

allí/ahí : There
 
amancebamiento : Action and effect of cohabitation; establishing a marriage-like relationship without being officially married. 

amanuense : Scribe, clerk

amarillo : Yellow

ambos(as) : Both

amigo(a) : Friend

amo(a) : Master, owner

amonestación matrimonial : Proclamation published during three successive Sundays before marriages; marriage banns.
 
amortajar : To put a shroud over the deceased.
 
amparo : Act of protection of the Indian on behalf of the Spaniard, specifically teaching about an office, raising him; duty of encomendero or patrón.

anciano(a) : Elderly
 
andrado(a) : Synonym of hijastro.

anejo(a) : Annex; a church dependent upon another one; rural district joined to a borough

ánima : Soul; those spirits consigned to purgatory; in the plural form, ánimas sometimes refers to the death mass or the tolling of the bells to summon to pray for the recently deceased person
 
ánima bendita / ánima del purgatorio : Soul in purgatory.

aniversario : Anniversary
 
annado(a) : See hijastro.
 
anotación : Temporary and provisional entry of a title in the record of property, as a precautionary guarantee of a law or of a future registration. Annotation.

ante : Before, in front of, in the presence of; in view of, with regard to

ante todo : Above all, first of all

anteiglesia : Atrium or portico (of a church); parish church; parish or district
 
antenado(a) : See entenado.
 
antenombre : Name or qualifier that is put before the proper name; for example: Don, San, etc.

antepasado(a) : Ancestor

anterior : Former, previous

antes : Before

antiguo(a) : Old, ancient
 
antroponimiaa. Study of the origin and significance of the proper names of people. b. The joining of proper names of people.

anual : Annual

anuario : Yearbook
 
anulara. To leave without effect a rule, act, or contract. b. To suspend something previously announced or projected. c. To incapacitate, deauthorize someone.

año : Year

año bisiesto : Leap year, the years in which the last two numerals of the year are divisible by four

año secular : The centenary years: 1500, 1600, 1700, 1800, 1900, and 2000 (the years 1600 and 2000 are also leap years).

aparecer : To appear

apartamiento : Judicial act or declaration by which one removes himself from a legal action or right.

apeamiento : Surveying; shoring up of a building.
 
apelativo : To give last name to or call.

apellido : Surname, family name, last name.
 
apellido compuesto : That is formed by two or more elements, the first being the first last name of the father and the second being the first last name of the mother.

apéndice : Appendix

apodo : Nickname
 
apostilla : Note in the margin that comments, interprets, or completes a text.

apostólico(a) : Apostolic

aprendiz(a) : Apprentice

aprobación : Document establishing the evidence of a fact, such as a proof of the nobility of a person’s family.

aproximado(a) : Approximate

aquel(la) : That

aquí : Here

arancel : Official tariff or custom

árbol : Tree

árbol genealógico : Genealogical tree, pedigree chart

archivo : Archives, place where records are kept; (office) files, file
 
archivo parroquial : Parish record; records kept by a local parish.

arciprestazgo : Land under jurisdiction of an archpriest composed of several parishes

arcipreste : Archpriest, a parish priest who also presides over several other parish priests
 
armorial : Armory; book or registry where the weapons of the nobility are recorded.
 
armorial particular : Armory (armorial) of a specific family.
 
arras : In some marriage rites, money that the newlyweds give as a symbol of their union.

arrendamiento : Rent, letting, lease
 
arrimado(a)a. Person who lives in somebody else's house or property. See agregadob. Person who through the granting of a piece of land where he or she has their house, sowing in part for themselves and in part for the landlord of the property.

arroba : Weight measure equivalent to 25 lbs. of 16 oz. each; liquid measurement equivalent to about 3 gallons; the fourth part of a quintal.

artículo : Article

arzobispado : Archbishopric, ecclesiastical territory under the jurisdiction of an archbishop

arzobispo : Archbishop, the bishop of a metropolitan church to which other bishops are subordinate

ascendencia : Ascendency, a series of ancestors

ascendiente : Ancestor

asiento : Seat on a tribunal or council; contract or obligation made to provide money or goods for the army
 
asiento registral : Inscription or annotation on a public record.

asilo : Asylum, shelter

asma : Asthma

audiencia : Regional high court; civil tribunal that dealt with the civil and criminal actions of the last resort (In the absence of a colonial viceroy this high court became the executive branch that represented the king.) A division of colonial government or viceroyalty.

aún : Still

ausente : Absent; absentee, missing person

ausente sin licencia : Military, absent without leave

auto : Judicial sentence; warrant; edict; various legal documents both judicial and administrative, not including wills or inventories

auto de fe : A public procedure in which those accused by the Inquisition were sentenced.
 
avecindado(a) : Established in a place with a home and family. Synonym of domiciliado.

ayer : Yesterday

ayuntamiento : Municipal government; town council; city hall

azúcar : Sugar

azul : Blue


abc


Letter B

bachiller(a) : Graduate of the equivalent of junior college in the United States; holder of a bachelor’s degree, baccalaureate; applied to priests who have graduated from the seminary.

bajo(a) : Low, short

balazo : Gunshot, bullet wound

banco : Bank; bench

banco de caballeros : Seat in city council held by nobility

banco de comuneros : Seat in city council held by commoners
 
baptisterioa. Chapel or enclosure where the baptismal font is found. b. Building, commonly with a circular or polygonal floor plan, next to a temple and generally small, where baptisms are performed.

barco : Ship
 
barraganaa. Concubine. b. Legitimate spouse, but in a lower position than the other spouse and to whom the civil rights of the main spouse didn't apply.
 
barraganía : See amancebamiento.

barrio : City ward

bautismo : a. Baptism. b. The first of the sacraments required by many Christian churches, that is administered by pouring water over the head or by immersion.

bautizar : To baptize, to christen

bebé : Baby

behetría : Free town under its own chosen prince or seigneur

bendición : Blessing

beneficencia : Beneficence, charity; welfare organization or institution, charity organization, public welfare office.

beneficio : Benefit, profit; development, cultivation (of land); ecclesiastical benefice; a position that is purchased; (law) right by law or privilege.

beneficio de deliberar : (law) Opportunity of deliberation in which the heir can postpone acceptance of inheritance until inventory has been made.

beneficio de inventario : (law) Benefit of inventory, right granted to heir to accept inheritance without being obligated to pay debts amounting to more than the inheritance.

beneficio simple : Ecclesiastical sinecure
 
benjamín(a) : The youngest child of a family.

biblioteca : Library

bien : Well, good

bienes : Properties, goods, fee

bienes raíces : Real property

bisabuelo(a)(s) : Great-grandparent(s)

bisnieto(a)(s) : Great-grandchild(ren)

blanco(a) : White
 
blasóna. Art of explaining and describing the coat of arms of every line, city, or person. b. Every figure, sign, or piece of those that are put on a coat of arms.

boca : Mouth

boda : Marriage, wedding. Synonym of casamiento.

bodigo : Bread taken to the church as an offering. Used in phrases such as  pan bodigo de aquartal (a cuartal)  o  pan bodigo de a medio.

bozal : Caste name given to Negros in Panama

braza : Length measure, length formed by having both arms of a person open and extended—which commonly is taken to be 6 feet of width.

brazo : Arm

bueno(a) : Good

bula : Papal bull or proclamation.

búsqueda : Research


abc


Letter C

caballería : Military cavalry; knightly order, knights, eg. la caballería de Santiago (the Knights of Santiago), knighthood, rank and privileges of a knight; knight’s fee, a grant of land made on the condition of maintaining one mounted man-at-arms; land measure (in Spain about 95 acres, in Cuba 33, in Puerto Rico 194, in Mexico 106).

caballero : Nobleman; knight; member of a military order; gentleman.

cabeza : Head
 
cabeza de casaa. Head of household. b. Person who, as a legitimate descendant of the founder, has the primogeniture and inherits all of their (property) rights. Synonym of cabeza de linaje.

cabildo : Municipal or town council; chapter of a cathedral or collegiate church.

cabildo abierto : Meetings of the town council and the citizens of the town.

cabo : Corporal (mil.)

cacicazgo : The territory governed by and/or the authority of a cacique

cacique(ca) : The chief or ruler of some Indian tribes; local ruler.
 
cacografía : Writing against the rules of ortography (spelling).
 
cadáver : Cadaver. Dead body
 
calidada. Nobility and prestige of blood. b. Nobility of the line.

calle : Street

callejo(n) : Alley, small street

cambio : Change, alteration; interchange, exchange; (law) exchange of posts by holders of government jobs or ecclesiastical benefices.

cambujo(a) : Mixture of one part of Indian blood, one part of Negro blood and one part of Chinese blood.

cambur(a) : Mixture of one part of Spanish blood, two parts of Indian blood and one part of Negro blood; taken from the parish registers of Mexico.

camino : Road

campesino(a) : Peasant

campo : Field
 
camposanto : Cemetery. Terrain intended to bury cadavers.

cáncer : Cancer
 
cancilleríaa. Special office of a diplomatic representation. b. Highest diplomatic center in which the outside politics are directed.

canonicato : Canonry (canons collectively), canonship

canónico(a) : Prescribed by, in conformity with, or having reference to ecclesiastical edict or canon law.
 
canónigo : Ecclesiastical that has a canonry; prerequisite to regularly attend the council of a cathedral or collegiate church.

caña de azúcar : Sugarcane

capellán : A priest who has a chaplaincy, or says mass in a private chapel and who is paid by a trust fund or private individual to administer the affairs of said fund or individual. Military priest at a  presidio.

capellanía : Benefice or foundation subject to certain obligations; lay foundation without ecclesiastical intervention

capilla : Chapel

capital : Assets; principal of a trust fund

capitán general : Supreme commander of a military region.

capitanía general : General captaincy; territorial demarcation governed by a Capitán General during the colonial era; major military administrative unit in Spain.

capitulación matrimonial : Marriage contract

capítulo matrimonial : Marriage articles, marriage contract, civil marriage.

cara : Face

cárcel : Jail

carga : Weight measurement, a certain portion of grain, which in Castile is 4 fanegas = 138,074 kg.

carga de tabaco o algodón : Weight measure equivalent to 92 kg

carnicero : Butcher

carpintero : Carpenter

carretera : Road
 
carta de dote : Public writing that expressed the contribution of goods that the spouse made.

carta de pago : Receipt (for payment)

carta de examen : Diploma; license (practice a trade or profession)

casa : House

casa solar / casa solariega : Ancestral home, manor house

casado(a) : Married
 
casal : Solar or casa solar.

casamiento : Marriage, wedding

casar, casarse : To marry

caserío(a) : Rural house with dependencies and lands, commonly used in the Basque countries. See also caserío.

caserío : Hamlet, see also casería.

casta : Caste; racial lineage; each one of the closed classes in which a society is divided (see the various “blood mixture” definitions and the racial terminology section in this glossary)—in many cases the caste distinctions are social rather than literal.

castellano : Native of Castile; Castilian Spanish; Spanish

castillo : Castle

castizo : Of a good caste; in Puerto Rico, a mixture of mestizo and Spanish blood; in Guatemala, a blood mixture of Spanish (15 parts) and  Criollo.
 
catafalco : Tomb adorned magnificenctly, the which is often put in temples for the funeral rites.

catalán(a) : Native of Catalonia; Romance language spoken in Catalonia and other Spanish regions of Spain that were part of the old Crown of Aragon.

catastro : Census; census of the lands and resources

Catastro de Ensenada : Census ordered in 1749 by the Marqués de la Ensenada for Charles III for the entire area ruled by Castile.

cátedra : The chair or seat of a bishop in his church; hence, the episcopal see or dignity.

catedral : Cathedral, Episcopal church of a diocese or archdiocese.

católico(a) : Catholic

catorce : Fourteen
 
caudal hereditario / caudal relicto : Made up of goods that are left behind after the death of a person and constituted the deceased's heritage. 

caudillo : Military leader, captain, cacique
 
causante : The person from whom the right to something is derived (e.g. the deceased); and as such, the person who possesses a primogeniture calls its originator to the one who founded it.

cazador : Hunter

c.c. = casado con : Married to
 
cédula : Official document in which something is accredited or noted.
 
cédula de comunión : Document that was given in parishes to ensure that the Easter precept (a precept that involves confession and taking communion around Easter) was completed.

cédula real : Royal decree

celemín : Dry measure equivalent to four cuartillos—4.625 liters.

cementerio : Cemetery; a place in the countryside where Christian Indians, slaves, and other poor persons are buried; a churchyard burial ground, behind, beside, or sometimes in front of the church; places within churches—in the floor, the walls, and special crypts, etc.; civil burial grounds which date from the beginning of civil registration within each country.
 
cena : Merciful work established in a will in intercessory prayer of the deceased.

censo : census of population, etc.; official register of citizens having the right to vote; head-tax, tribute, tax; annual stipend paid formerly by some churches to their prelates; (law) living pledge, contract, whereby an estate is pledged to payment of an annuity as interest on a loan without transfer of title.

centenario : Centennial
 
cepa : Branch or origin of a family or line.
 
cera : The collection of candles or large wax candles that serve some function.

cerca : Near, approximate

cerrajero : Locksmith
 
cerrarse las velaciones : The Church suspending marriage vigils during certain times of year.

certificado : Certificate, certified

certificación : Certification, attestation

cervecero(a) : Brewer

chancillería : Supreme Spanish tribunals of justice prior to the nineteenth century; courts of original jurisdiction for proof of nobility.
 
chantre : Dignity of cathedrals, whose responsibility in olden days was running the singing in the choir.

chino(a) : In Peru, blood mixture: offspring of a mulatto and an Indian

chiticalla : Person, thing or event kept anonymous

cholo(a) : In Peru, blood mixture: offspring of a mestizo and an Indian.
 
chozno(a) : Great-great-great-grandson; son of the great-great-grandson of someone.

ciego(a) : Blind

ciento : One hundred

cimarrón(a) : In Mexico and Guatemala, mixture of one part of Spanish blood, one part of Indian blood, and two parts of Negro blood; in Panama, a rebellious slave.

cinco : Five

cincuenta : Fifty
 
circa (ca.) : (Latin) Towards or near.

ciudad : City

ciudadano(a) : Citizen

clase : Class, type, kind; (military) non-commissioned officers

clérigo : Clergyman; those who have been received into a sacred order (in military orders this is distinguished from caballero).
 
clero : Clergy; priest class in the Catholic church.

codicilio / codicilo / cobdicilio / cobdecilio : Codicil, amendment to a will.  

c.m.c. = contrajo matrimonio con : Contracted marriage with

cofradía : Congregation or brotherhood of religious individuals; confraternity; guild; trade union.

cofrade / confrade : Member of a cofradía
 
cognación : Blood relationship through the female line among the descendants of a common branch.
 
cognado(a) : Relative through cognación.
 
cognaticio(a) : Relative to the relationship through cognación.
 
cognominar : To call someone by a nickname or last name.

cojo(a) : Lame

colector(a) : Collector of taxes, or of collection for the church.

colecturía : Death records listing collections of payments for funeral and masses.

colegiata / iglesia colegia : Collegiate church. Church that, not being the proper headquarters of the archbishop or bishop, which makes up the abbey and secular canons. In the church the divine offices are celebrated just as in cathedrals.

colegio notarial : Notarial college

colina : Hill

colinda con : Coterminous with

colonia : Colony

colonial : Time period beginning at the conquest and ending with the wars of independence, or approximately 1492-1825 (1899 for Puerto Rico, Cuba, and the Philippines); of or relating to that time period; relating to a colony.

colorado(a) : Red

comadre : Midwife; godmother
 
comadrón(a) : Person with legal titles that attends a woman's labor. Synonym of partera.

comandancia general : Military administrative unit, commandery

comerciante : Merchant

comercio : Business, commerce; business district or area.

comerciante : Merchant

como : As, how

compañía : A legal association or society of several persons united for a single purpose, commercial, social, or ecclesiastical; military unit

comparecer : To appear officially

compraventa : Contract of purchase and sale

compromiso : Pledge, commitment, promise; engagement (to be married); (law) compromise, arbitration, agreement

comunidad : Community, particularly a religious group; village, commune, community

comunión : Communion, partaking of the Eucharist

con : With

concejal : Councilman

concejo / concejil : Council

concerniente : Concerning

concierto : Agreement, contract; arrangement, settlement

concilio : Council

Concilio Tridentino / Concilio de Trento : Council of Trent
 
concubinato : Marital relationship of a man with a woman without being married.

concuñado(a) : Spouse of one’s own spouse's brother or sister.

condado : Earldom, courtship (dignity, jurisdiction or possessions of an earl or count); county.

conde(sa) : Count, earl; overseer
 
condecoración : Give someone honors and awards. b. Cross or other insignia similar to honor and distinction.

confirmación : Confirmation, affirmation, corroboration; the religious sacrament of confirmation administered by the bishop.

congregación : Congregation; assembly; Religious Brotherhood; committee of cardinals, or of a religious order.

conocido(a) : Known; acquaintance

conocido(a) como : Known as
 
conjunto(a) : Joined with someone through a relationship or friendship.
 
connubio : Union of a man and woman arranged through certain rites.

conquistadores : Spanish conquerors of the New World in the 16th century.

consanguinidad : Consanguinity, kinship, blood relationship, measures in degrees in canon law by counting from each person to the common ancestor

consejo : Council

Consejo de Castilla or Real   : Of Castile, Royal Council, supreme administrative body in Spain.

Consejo de Indias : Royal council that governed the colonies

consentimiento : Consent, compliance, acquiescence

consignación : Consignment; deposit (of money)

consorte : Spouse; partner associate

constar : To be recorded or registered

constipación : Constipation

constipado : Constipated; having a cold
 
consuegro(a) : Father-in-law or mother-in-law of the son of someone. Synonym of consorte.

consumimiento / consunción : Consumption, exhaustion

contenido : Contents

contra : Against

contratación : Marking; trade; Casa de Contratación, Spanish government entity located in Seville and overseeing all comercial activity and the colonies, 1503-1790.

contrato : Contract, agreement enforceable by law.

contrato de aprendizaje : Contract of apprenticeship

contrayente : Contracting party, such as in a marriage.

contribución : Tax

convenio : Agreement, covenant, pact

convento : Convent

conversión : Conversion

convulsión : Convulsion

cónyuge : Spouse, consort; (pl.) married couple.

copia literal : Literal or word-for-word copy

cordelero(a) : Rope maker

cordillera : Mountain range
 
cormano(a) : First cousin

coronel : (mil.) Colonel

corregidor : Spanish magistrate, mayor appointed by the King; royal governor of the district.

corregimiento : Occupation of the Corregidor, the territory in which he exercises his jurisdiction.

corriente : Current, present (week, month, year)
 
cortejoa. Made up of people that form the accompaniment in a ceremony. b. Person that has romantic relationships with another person.

[letra] cortesana : Court hand; paleographic term referring to the writing used in the courts during a period between 1500 and 1650 A.D.

cortesano(a) : Courtier, royal attendant

cosa : Thing, something; affair, business

cosecha : Harvest

coto : Group of estates with one owner

coto redondo : Group of estates with one owner

coyote(a) : Mixture of four parts of Spanish blood, three parts of Indian blood, and one part of Negro blood, taken from the parish registers of Mexico  

criada : Maid

criatura : Infant, child

criollo(a) : Creole; Latin-American colonial born of European parents.
 
cripta : Crypt; subterranean place in which the dead are usually buried.

crisma : Chrism, consecrated oil

cristiano(a) : Christian

cronista : c = Chronicler, historian
 
cruz alta : High cross. Testament done by testators (people who have written a will) that either enjoyed higher social rank or were more wealthy, that stipulated the accompaniment of the high cross in the funeral procession. Procession for which the deceased is accompanied with a cross during the burial.
 
cruz baja : Low cross. Testament done by poor testators, that stipulated the accompaniment of the low cross in the funeral procession.
 
cruz procesional : Cross is brought around a shaft or handle and generally between two candlesticks in processions and other religious functions. 

cuadra : Stable; city block

cuál : Which

cuándo : When

cuarenta : Forty

cuaresma : Lent, the forty days before Easter beginning on Ash Wednesday; collection of Lent sermons.
 
cuarta funeral : The parish's right to a part of all the bonuses and emoluments (salaries, fees, profits) of the funeral and masses of its parishioners, celebrated in church.
 
cuarta marital : Portion of goods that Catalan law recognizes to the widow at the death of her husband.

cuarteado : Mixture of two parts of Spanish blood, one part of Indian blood and one part of Negro blood; the offspring of a mestizo and a mulatto.
 
cuartel : Each one of the four equal parts into which a whole is divided.

cuarterón(a) : Mixture of three parts of Spanish blood, one part of mulatto blood; at times called morisco.

cuarterón de chino : In Peru, mixture of Spanish and chino blood

cuarterón de mestizo : In Peru, mixture of Spanish and mestizo blood

cuarterón de mulato : In Peru, mixture of Spanish and mulatto blood

cuartillo : Dry measure equivalent to ¼ celemín, or 1.156 liters

cuarto : Room

cuarto : Fourth

cuate(a) : In México, the word used for twins; usually the Spanish is mellizos.

cuatrero(a) : Mixture of one part of Spanish blood and three parts of Indian blood; the offspring of a mestizo and an Indian.

cuatrillizos : Quadruplets

cuatro : Four

cuatrocientos : Four hundred

cuenta : Account, bill, report

cuerpo : Body, volume, book, body of laws, of writings, of people; corps (diplomatic and military).

cumpleaños : Birthday
 
cuna : Lineage, family, or line

cuñada : Sister-in-law

cuñado : Brother-in-law, spouse of any female relative, such as a nephew-in-law.

cura : Parish priest, vicar
 
cura coadjutor : Priest's assistant.Term with which the helper of a bishop or parish priest is designated in his respective ministeries. In the case of bishop's assistant, he has the right and duty to attend to the titular bishop and to the government, succession, and residency of the diocese. In the case of the priest's assistant, his duties and rights are those of the parish vicar. 
 
cura de almas : The responsibility that the parish priest to care for, instruct, and administer the sacraments to his parishioners. Synonym of cura párroco.
 
cura ecónomo : Priest assigned to a parish by the prelate (bishop, person in a high religious position) to perform the functions of the parish priest, by vacancy, sickness, or absence of the propietor. Synonym of cura interino.
 
cura párroco : Priest in charge of a parish. Synonym of cura de almas and cura propio.
 
cura propio : Parish priest. Synonym of cura párroco.
 
cura teniente : Priest that substitutes for the cura párroco (parish priest) in his functions.

curato : Parish

curia : Administrative and judicial organization under the bishop

cursiva : Paleographic term: cursive, flowing handwriting, italic

curtidor(a) : Tanner

cuyo(a) : Whose


abc


Letter D

dado : As long as, provided that, given that

data : Date

de : Of, from, belonging to

de los mismos : Of the same, usually refers to previous wording, such as month and year

de primera instancia : (court) Of original jurisdiction

de repente : Suddenly

debilidad : Weakness, disability

década : Decade

decanato : Deanship, deanery (post and residence of university dean)

décimo(a) : Tenth

decimoctavo(a) : Eighteenth

decimocuarto(a) : Fourteenth

decimonono(a) : Nineteenth

decimoquinto(a) : Fifteenth

decimoséptimo(a) : Seventeenth

decimosexto(a) : Sixteenth

decimotercero(a) : Thirteenth

declaración : Declaration, statement, affidavit

declarado(a) : Declared, stated

decreto : Decree

dedicado(a) : Dedicated

dedo : Finger

defensor : Defense, counsel

defunción : Death

dehesa : Pasture land

delación : Relinquishment, abandonment; (law) assignment

delegación : Delegation (delegating of power); group of delegates

demanda : Demand, claim
 
demografía : Demography. Statistical study of a human group, referring to a specific moment or human evolution.

dentición : Teething

dentro : Within, inside

denuncia : Accusation, denunciation

departamento : District, department; one of the districts into which a country or state or province is divided

depósito : Deposit, depository

derecha : Right

derecho : Law; right

derecho canónico : Canon law

derrame : Stroke; spill

desacuerdo : Disagreement

desaveniencia : Disagreement
 
descendencia : Caste, line, lineage

descendiente : Descendant

desconocido(a) : Unknown

descripción : Description

desde : Since

despachar : To finish or shorten at a section; to resolve or determine the causes; to send a person or thing

despoblado : Unpopulated
 
despojar : To extract from a book or object of study those data or information that are considered of interest.
 
desposado(a) : Recently married
 
desposar : To authorize someone's marriage. Verb of desposorio.

después : After

detrás : After, behind
 
deudo(a) : Relative
 
dezmería : Territory that was claimed as tithing for a church or specific person.
 
dezmero(a) : Someone who pays his or her tithing; someone who collects or claims tithing.

día de los reyes : Day of the Kings or Magi, Twelfth Night, January 6th

diario : Daily

diarrea : Diarrhea
 
días geniales : Those that celebrate with a party or festival; for example, birthdays, nuptials, or weddings.

diccionario : Dictionary

diccionario corográfico : Geographical dictionary

diciembre : December

dicho(a) : Stated, said, the above mentioned; (law) declaration, statement made by witness

diecinueve : Nineteen

dieciocho : Eighteen

dieciséis : Sixteen

diecisiete : Seventeen

diente : Tooth

diez : Ten

diezmo : Tithing; part of one's increase, normally the tenth, that the faithful pay to the Church.

difo. = difunto : Deceased

difunto(a) : Deceased

dignidades reales : Your Royal Highness; royal concessions or grants

digno(a) : Worthy

digo : I say, I mean, frequently used by scribes in records to correct errors as they wrote

diligencia matrimonial : Premarital investigation conducted by parish priest

diócesis : Diocese, unit of the Catholic Church presided over by a bishop

diputado(a) : Deputy

discernimiento : Judgment; appointment of a guardian

disentería : Dysentery

dispensa / dispensación : Exemption, permission

dispensa apostólica : Apostolic dispensation or grant given by a pope or bishop, depending upon its nature

dispensa de su santidad : Apostolic dispensation or grant given by a pope or bishop

dispensa matrimonial : Exception to canon law regulation given by bishop to bride and groom to permit marriage, e.g. , for being related within the 4th degree

disposición : Arrangement, disposal

dista / distante / distancia : Distance (from)

distrito : District
 
divisa : Emblem; outer sign to distinguish someone, grades or other things.

divorciado(a) : Divorced

divorcio : Divorce

doce : Twelve

doctrina : Doctrine; ritual; a village of Indians that as yet has not been designated as a parish (curato or parroquia), a district under the direction of a priest expressly called to indoctrinate the Indians; Latin American parish.
 
documentación : Documentation; document or collection of documents, generally of official nature, that are used for personal identification.

documento : document

documento nacional de identidad : personal identity document issued by the civil government (used throughout much of the Hispanic world)

domicilio : Dwelling, residence

domiciliado en : Residing in

domingo : Sunday

don : Title of respect prefixed to Christian names, which prior to 1832 usually referred to nobility or to political or ecclesiastical office holders

donación : Donation, gift, grant
 
donado(a) : Donated; lay brother/sister. Person that has taken the vows and entered as a servant into the order of a religious congregation, and attends with certain types of religious habit, but without actually performing the profession.

donde : Where

doña : Lady (see don); woman; (Chile) gift, bequest; (pl.) bridegroom’s presents to the bride

dos : Two

doscientos : Two hundred

dotación : Endowment, dowry

dote : Dowry, that property which a woman takes into marriage. See carta de dote.

d.s.p. = defunctus sine prole : Died without issue

ducado : The coin of gold or silver that the Catholic monarchs created, established in the value of 375 maravedís de vellón, which varied; dukedom, duchy.

ducado de plata : Its value was 375 maravedís of silver and corresponded in vellón with the variety—according to the increase or decrease which silver had at different times.

dueño(a) : Owner

duodécimo : Twelfth

duque(sa) : Duke, title of honor which follows that of prince.


abc


Letter E

eclesiástico(a) : Ecclesiastical. Related to the Church, particularly the clergy.

ecónomo : Priest temporarily in charge of a parish.

edad : Age
 
ego : The person considered the point of reference for familial relationships.

ejecutor(a) : Executor

ejecutorio(a) : Court or administrative body that issues ejecutorios.

ejecutorios : Legal patent of nobility; (law) writ of execution (of a judgment).

ejército : Army, military

él : He, him

el : The

elección : Election

ella : She

ellos : They

emancipación : Emancipation, the act of freeing from servitude

embarazada : Pregnant

embarcar : To pack, crate, bale; to go aboard a vessel

emigración : Emigration, population movement, leaving one’s native country to go and establish oneself in another country

emigrante : Emigrant
 
emparentar : To become related by marriage.

empleado(a) : Employee

encinta : Pregnant

en tierra : On land

encomendero(a) : One who had Indians assigned to him in an encomienda during the first centuries of the colonial era (see amparo).

encomienda : Patronage, commandery; dignity of military order to which a geographical territory and certain income therefrom was attached; a village or territory of Indians that was under the jurisdiction of an encomendero who was charged with the supervision of the moral and civil education of a group of Indians in exchange for a tribute collected from the Indian labor.
 
endogamia : Social attitude of rejecting the incorporation of members 

enero : January

enfermedad : Disease
 
entenado(a) : See hijastro.

enterrado(a) : Buried
 
enterramiento : Hole made in the earth to bury a cadaver. It is not synonymous with defunción.

entierro : Burial, funeral, interment
 
entierro de segunda clase : Characterized by the positioning of six candles on the altar, six candles around the deceased, two candles in every one of the collateral and following altars of the temple, 12 large candles and four more with wicks. Burial with singing and high cross (cruz alta), choir and vigil.
 
entierro de tercera clase : Burial with singing and high cross (cruz alta) and choir, without vigil.
 
entierro de cuarta clase : Burial with low cross (cruz baja), without choir nor vigil.
 
entierro doble : Funeral ritual with vigil, mass with body present, and two solemn processions; one from the house of the deceased to the church, and the other from the church to the burial site. Synonym of oficio doble.
 
entierro llano : Funeral ritual without a vigil, without a mass, and without processions, only the prayer for the dead (responso).

entrambos(as) : Both

entre : Between, among
 
entroncara. To use instruments to test whether a person has the same lineage or origin as another person. b. To develop a familial relationship or connection with some family or house.
 
entronque : Familial relationship between people that have a common lineage.

envejecido(a) : Elderly

epidemia : Epidemic
 
epígrafe : Epigraph; inscription on rock, metal, etc., to conserve someone's memory or some event.

epilepsia : Epilepsy

episcopal : Episcopal; of the bishop
 
epitafio : Epitaph. Inscription that is put, or supposed to be put, over a tomb, on the tombstone or engraving together with the burial.
 
epónimo(a) : Eponymous. A person or thing that shares a name with a town, city, illness, etc.

era : (I, you, he, she, it) was/were

éramos : (We) were

eran : (You, they) were

eras : (You) were
 
ermita : Chapel or sanctuary, generally small, normally situated in a deserted area and that often does not hold regular worship.

es : (You, he, she, it) are/is
 
escalafón : List of the individuals in a corporation, classified according to degree, age, merits, etc.

escarlata / escarlatina : Scarlet fever

esclavitud : Slavery

esclavo(a) : Slave

escribanía : Noraty office; court clerkship, office of the court clerk; writing desk.

escribano(a) : Notary; court clerk, judge’s secretary

escribiente : Scribe

escritura : Writing, handwriting; document, e.g., deed; instrument contract, indenture.

escritura encadenada : Chain writing, a form of procesal handwriting used extensively before the sixteenth century.
 
escudo de armas : Coat of arms
 
escudo de familia : Is formed of one or more quarters exclusively corresponding to the first last name.
 
escudo hereditario : That of aged use in families, representative of the nobility of their blood.

escuela : School

ese / esa : That

español : The Spanish language

español(a) : Of or relating to Spain; in colonial records, racial designation indicative of white or of pure Spanish blood.

español criollo : Spanish creole; that individual born of Spanish parents within the Spanish colonies.

espera : (law) Adjournment
 
esponsales : Betrothed, engaged

esposo(a) : Husband (wife), spouse

espurio(a) : Illegitimate, bastard
 
esquela : Death notice. Announcement of someone's death that is published in magazines with an insert or placed in public places, indicating the date and place of the burial, funeral, etc.

está : (You, he, she, it) are/is

estación : Season; station

estado : Status, e.g., marital status; state, nation, country, government

estamos : (We) are

están : (They, you) are

estar : To be
 
estandarte : Insignia that civil and religious corporations use. It consisted of an oblong piece of fabric with an emblem on it.

este : East

este(a, o) : This
 
estema : In a textual critique, outline of the affiliation and passing of manuscripts or versions coming from the original work.
 
estipendio : Stipend, fee, salary
 
estirpe : Family lineage

estómago : Stomach

estoy : (I) am
 
eucaristía : Eucharist. In Catholic tradition, a sacrament insituted by Jesus Christ, which through the priest's prayer, transforms the brean and wine into Christ's body and blood.

evangélico(a) : Evangelical

examen(a) : See carta de examen.
 
excomunión : Excommunication. In Catholicism, to stop someone from participating in the communion of the faithful and the use of the sacraments.
 
exequias : Funeral honors

exhumación : Exhumation, removal of a corpse from its grave, niche, or mausoleum.
 
exogamiaa. Rule or practice to get engaged with a spouse from a different tribe or hailing from a different region. b. Crossing between individuals of different races, communities, or populations, that leads to even more heterogeneous descendants.
 
exónimo : Name with which a place is called in a distinct tongue in the vernacular. For example, London is exónimo of Londres.

expediente : The written proceedings of a particular action; petition; file.

expediente de quinta : Conscript’s file; the written conscription proceedings.

expediente matrimonial : Marriage proceeding or application

expósito(a) : Abandoned, foundling child (frequently used as the surname for such children)

extracto : Extract. Summary of any document, expressing in precise terms only the most fundamental aspects.

extracto del certificado : Summary or abstract of the certificate (not a literal copy).

extramuros : Outside the city walls

extranjero(a)  : Foreigner

extraño(a) : Stranger

extremaunción : Extreme unction, last rite (fifth of the Seven Sacraments) administered to a gravely ill person, usually just before death.


abc


Letter F

fábrica : Factory; construction; church property funds.

fallecer : To die

fallecido(a) : Deceased

familia : Family; all persons of the same blood, such as uncles, cousins, nephews, etc.
 
familia extendida : Extended family. When two or more families from different generations, joined by ties of blood and by the same way of cohabitation, are assembled below the authority of one head.
 
familia extensa : Extended family. Collects successive father-to-son generations as well as  the different families formed by the collaterals, siblings of the same generation with their respective spouses and children.

familiar : Pertaining to a family; domestic; servant of the clergy; local representative or servant of the Inquisition
 
familia nuclear : Nuclear family. A family that can be formed by a couple that is either married or unmarried, with one or more unmarried children. Can also be made up of one parent with one or more unmarried children.

fanega : Unit of measure equating 1.5 bushels; dry measurements—12 celemines, which is equivalent to 55.5 liters; weight measurement— measurements of grain and other seeds, it is the fourth part of what in Castile is called a “carga” of wheat, because this has about 4 arrobas.

fe : Certificate; faith

febrero : February

fecha : Date

feligrés(a) : Parishioner, person belonging to a given parish

feligresía : Parish congregation.

femenino(a) : Feminine
 
féretro : Coffin

ferrería : Iron works

ferrocarril : Railroad

feudo : Fee

fianza : Deposit, guarantee, bond, bail

fichas : Index cards

fichero : Filing cabinet; index-card system, filing-card system, card-catalog

fiebre tifoidea : Typhoid fever

fiel de fechos : Individual authorized to act as a notary in towns where no notary is available

filiación : Military register of a soldier; parental ties between parents and children

filial : Relating to a son; dependent institution

finado(a) : Deceased

finiquito : Closing of an account

firma : Signature

flaqueza : Weakness

floresta : Forest, grove

folio : Page of a book, notebook or bundle (legajo).
 
folio recto : First page, when only it is numbered.
 
folio vuelto : Back or reverse side of a sheet of paper that is not numbered, except on the first page.
 
fondo : Collection of existing books or documents in a library or archive.

fondos : Funds

fornicación : Fornication, sexual union outside of the marriage contract where the persons involved are not married

foro : Tribunal court; bar, legal profession; lease, rent.

fortaleza : Fortress, strength

francés(a) : French
 
fratríaa. Children from one single couple. b. Brotherhood.

frente : Front, in front of

frontera : Border, frontier

fue : (You, he, she, it) were/was

fuego : Fire, hearth

fuente : Fountain, source
 
fuente primaria : Primary source. Sources containing firsthand information about historical events.
 
fuente secundaria : Secondary source. Indirect source of information that was recorded by author(s) who did not witness the event firsthand.

fuero : Jurisdiction; right, the privilege of the clergy and military to be tried in their own courts; traditional regional law.

fueron : (You, they) were

fui : (I) was

fuimos : (We) were

fundación : Foundation endowment. Document where a primogeniture's clauses appear.

futuro : Future


abc


Letter G

ganado : Cattle

gemelo(a) : Twin; word used to distinguish one or two or more children born at the same time.

genealogía : Genealogy.  Series of someone's ancestors and descendants.
 
genealogía adulterada : Lineage that has been altered fraudulently for convenience, or for some unknown reason, and that tries to pass as genuine. It is characterized by a lack of precision in genealogical data, an absence of information that accurately identifies ancestors, or scarce documentation.
 
genearca : Head of a genealogical line. Synonym of patriarca.
 
generación : Succession of descendants in the direct line.

gente : People
 
gentilicio(a) : Related to a family line.
 
germano(a) : Blood brother. Synonym of hermano carnal.

gobernación : Government, governing

gobernador : Governor, the supreme ruler of a province, department, city or territory.

gota : Gout, drop. Illness caused by the accumulation of acid crystals in the joints, in which very painful swelling is induced.

grado : Degree, grade, rank
 
grado de consanguinidad : Each one of the generations that mark a familial relationship.
 
grado de consanguinidad canónico : Calculates generational degree while ascending the family line, stopping at the common ancestor. Does not count the starting person or the descending line.
 
grado de consanguinidad civil : Calculates  generational degree by counting the individuals that separate one person from another, without counting the starting person.

gran / grande : Grand, great, large
 
gravamen : Tax on assets or property.

gremio : Guild, society, association, brotherhood. Corporation formed by teachers, officials, and apprentices of the same profession or office, governed by ordinances or special statutes.

gripe : Influenza

guarda : Guard, warden

guardia : Guard, body of soldiers; keeper, custodian.

guía : Guide; advisor, instructor, trainer.


abc


Letter H

h. = hijo : Son

habitante : Inhabitant
 
hábito : Habit. a. Dress or suit that each person uses according to his or her state, ministery, or nation, particularly one used by the religious. b. Outfit of a certain color and make that somebody is expected to wear to show devotion or sacrifice.

hace ya dos años : Two years ago already. May be used with any number.

hacienda : Farmstead, estate, farm, a rural establishment; the Treasury Department.
 
hagiónimo : Name of a saint.

hecho(a) : Completed, done

hembra : Female

hemorragia : Hemorrhage, bleeding

heráldica : Heraldry; art of coat of arms.
 
heraldista : Person versed in heráldica (heraldry).

heredad :  a. Portion of cultivated land, traditionally inherited to a family.  b. Inheritance.

heredero(a) : Heir. By will or law, person who receives an inheritance.
 
heredero(a) forzoso(a) : Person who has a legal right to part of the inheritance that the testator cannot take out nor sever without legitimate cause of disinheritance.

herencia : Inheritance. Collection of goods, rights, and obligations that, when someone dies, are transmitted to his or her heir(s).

hermanastro(a) : Stepbrother, stepsister, half brother, half sister

hermandad : Brotherhood (religious or by blood), confraternity, fraternity, sisterhood.

hermano(a) : Brother, sister; siblings, born of the same parents, or of the same father, or of the same mother.
 
hermanos(as) carnales : Blood brothers. Person who has the same father and mother as someone else.
 
hermanos(as) de madre : Brothers of father. Person who has the same mother as someone else, but not the same father. Synonym of hermanos agnados.
 
hermanos(as) de padre : Brothers by father. Person who has the same father as someone else, but not the same mother. Synonym of hermanos cognados.
 
hermano(a) político(a) : Brother-in-law (sister-in-law)

herrero : Blacksmith
 
heterogamia : Heterogamy. Refers to unions between spouses of different classes, stratum, or educational levels.

hidalgo(a) : Noble, of noble blood, gentry; from hijo de algo literally “son of something”.
 
hidalgo(a) de bragueta : Father who, having had seven legitimate sons consecutively, acquired the law of hidalguía (nobility).
 
hidalgo(a) de cuatro costados : Nobleman whose paternal and maternal grandparents were nobility.
 
hidalgo(a) de ejecutoria : Nobleperson who disputed his or her hidalguía (nobility) and proved to be noble by blood.
 
hidalgo(a) de gotera : Nobleperson who enjoyed the privileges of their nobility only in a town, in such a way that they lost them as they moved their home.
 
hidalgo de privilegio : Nobleperson who had an ancestral home or descended from a family that had one.
 
hidalgo de solar conocido : Nobleperson who had an ancestral home or descended from a family who had one.
 
hidalguía : Civil state and condition of the nobility.

hidropesía : Dropsy, edema. Illness caused by an excess of liquid in some part of the body that may present itself as swelling.

hijastra : Stepdaughter

hijastro : Stepson, stepchild

hijo(a) : Child, son, daughter (usually appears in documents modified by some adjective such as legítimo,  ilegítimo,  natural, etc.).

hijo(a) adoptivo(a) : Adopted child, a person that legally uses the name of another.
 
hijo(a) bastardo(a) : Bastard child. Child born outside of matrimony.
 
hijo(a) de la cuna / de la piedra : Someone recently married who was abandoned or cast out, or confided to a charitable establishment. Synonym of expósito.
 
hijo(a) espurio(a) : Illegitimate child; illegitimate child with an unknown father.
 
hijo(a) ilegítimo(a) : Illegitimate child.

hijo(a) legítimo(a) : Legitimate child, a child born of a legal union.

hijo(a) natural : Common-born child, a child born of unwed parents who could have been legally married if they had desired, an illegitimate child.

hijo(a) político(a) : Son-in-law (daughter-in-law)
 
hijo(a) sacrílego(a) : Child born by the violation of a vow of chastity.

hijodalgo : See hidalgo.

hijos : Sons, children

hijuela : Document listing the assets that a person is to receive from a decedent’s estate; the assets to be received from a decedent’s estate; little daughter, little girl; annex or subordinate church.

hinchazón : Swelling
 
hipocorístico(a) : Pet name. Name that in diminutive, abbreviated, distorted, or infantile form, is used as an affectionate, familiar, or euphemistic designation for someone. It is not a synonym of apodo.

hipoteca : Mortgage, pledge

Hispaniola : Colonial name for Haiti and the Dominican Republic.

historia : History
 
historia oral : Oral history. Stories, legends, myths, etc. that are passed from generation to generation by vocal means rather than written records.

h.l. = Hijo legítimo

h.n. = Hijo natural

hogar : Home

hoja : Leaf, sheet of paper, page of book

hoja de lámina : Plate (book)

hoja de servicios : Service record, document of an officer containing the personal and professional antecedents of government employees, used extensively in the military.

hoja familiar : Family group sheet

holandés(a) : Dutch

hombre : Man, husband
 
homogamia : Refers to marrying someone that has the same educational level or part of the same social class.
 
homónimo(a) : Homonym. Said of people or things that have the same name. Synonym of tocayo.

honesto(a) : Honest

hora : Hour

hospedero : Innkeeper

huérfano(a) : Orphan
 
huesa : Hole to bury a cadaver.


abc


Letter I

i : (y) And

i. / ill. = ilegítimo  : Illegitimate
 
ibidem : (Latin) In the same place. In indices, notes, printed citations, or manuscripts.
 
idem : (Latin) The same. Generally abbreviated in quotes to represent the author's aforementioned name, and in counts and lists, to denote different groups of one species.

idioma : Language

iglesia : Church

Iglesia Católica : Catholic Church

igual : Equal

ilegítimo : Illegitimate

ill. = ilegítimo  : Illegitimate

impedimento : Obstacle, hindrance, obstruction; impediment, in particular one of those imposed by canon law to prevent marriage by related persons, married persons, etc.
 
impedimento canónico : Ecclesiastical decision to prohibit the celebration of a marriage based on the established impediments in the Code of Canonic Law.
 
impedimento de consanguinidad : Cinsists of restrictions against the marriage of people who are blood-related. Any degree of relation above the fourth was considered acceptable.

imperio : Empire

imponible : Taxable
 
impúber : Taxable

impuesto : Tax
 
in articulo mortis : (Latin) In a dangerous, possibly fatal situation for people that bring about a judicial act, especially a marriage.

in facie ecclesiae : (Latin) Before the church ; used in marriage documents to describe full church marriage.
 
incesto : Incest. Sexual relationship between close (blood-wise) relatives.
 
inclusa : House in which abandoned children gather and grow up.

incógnito(a) : Unknown, unrecognized

incontinente : Immediately, promptly

indemnidad : Indemnity (security or protection against injury, damage, or loss).

Indias : Indies; the Americas, including the Caribbean, Mexico, Central and South America.

índice : Written index, list, catalog

indígena : Indigenous, native, Indian

indigente : Indigent

indio(a) : Indian, a person living with the Indians who adopts their customs, a social designation.

industria : Industry

información : Declaration or statement of fact
 
información de sangre : Information that reassured the quality of someone's ancestry to fulfill  requirements for a certain end.

información matrimonial : A bundle of papers or an entry in a parish book which originates from pre-marriage proceedings that include the publication of banns (amonestación matrimonial), declarations by the contracting parties and witness, and at times a copy of the marriage ceremony, copies of baptismal records of bride and groom, and consents of parents to marriage or copies of their death records.

infrascrito(a) / infrascripto(a) : Written hereafter; undersigned person

inglés(a) : English

inhumación : Burial

inmigración : Immigration, population movement between two countries, entry to a foreign country with the intention of establishing permanent residence there.

inmigrante : Immigrant

inmoble : Real estate. Also inmovible.

inmueble : Real estate
 
innominado(a) : Nameless or unnamed

ino. = indio : Indian
 
inscripción sacramental : Annotation or entry that is made in sacrament books to preserve records of events, like baptism, communion, confirmation, marriage, and burial. Inscriptions are registered by chronological order.

instancia : Petition, request

instancia, corte de primera : Lower court, court of original jurisdiction
 
instrumento : Instrument. Writing, paper, or document that justifies or tests something.

intendencia : Intendency, territorial division under the direction of the intendente, which originated in the Americas during the last quarter of the eighteenth century under the reign of Carlos III and continued until the Independence Era.

intendente(a) : Mayor
 
inter vivos : (Latin) Among the living.

intestado(a) : Intestate. Someone who dies without a valid will/testament.

intestinos : Intestines

inventario : Inventory. Entry of the goods and other belongings of a person or community, done with order and precision.

inventario de bienes de difunto : Inventory of the deceased person’s assets

investigador : Investigating, researching; investigator

invierno : Winter

Islas Fortunatas : Colonial name for the Canary Islands.

italiano(a) : Italian

itálico(a) : Italic. Paleographic term, italic, cursive script introduced during the sixteenth century in Spain and the Americas.  Synonym of bastarda.

ítem : Item. Used to introduce a new fact or statement, or, more frequently, each new article or particular in an enumeration, esp. in a formal list or document, as an inventory, or will.

izquierda : Left


abc


Letter J

jardinero : Gardener                                                                                     

jesuita : Jesuit

jornalero(a) : Journeyman, day laborer

jubilado : Retired

judío(a) : Jewish

jueves : Thursday

juez : Judge, juryman; governor of Castile
 
juez de primera instancia : Regular judge of a district, who knows at first instance the civil subjects not committed by law to municipal judges, and in criminal matters directs the instruction of indictments.

julio : July

junio : June

junto(s) : Together

junto a : Next to

jurado : Juryman

juramento : Oath

jurisdicción : Jurisdiction

jurisdicciones : Jurisdictions; boundary; district

juro(s) : Right of perpetual ownership, perpetual annuity; pension

justicia : Justice, rightness, fairness; court (of justice); tribunal

juzgado : Local court

juzgado de comarca : Region or district court

juzgado de primera instancia : Court of original jurisdiction (the first petition)


abc


Letter L

l., leg. = legítimo : Legitimate

la : The (feminine)

labrador(a) : Farmer, peasant

ladino(a) : Mixture of three parts of Spanish blood, and one part of Indian blood; a name given to those Indians who speak Spanish; in Panama, a Christian Negro who spoke Spanish; in Costa Rica, a name indicating a social position, or a Spaniard with a small amount of Indian blood.

ladrillero : Brick mason, bricklayer

lago : Lake
 
lapsus calami : (Latin) "Error of pen"; mechanical error that occurs while writing.

lasto : Receipt given to a person who pays for someone else

latifundio : Large landed estate typical of Andalucia and large parts of Latin America

latitud : Latitude
 
laude : Gravestone or stone that is put in the tomb, commonly with an inscription or coat of arms.

lechero : Dairyman
 
legado : Legacy. Disposition legally formalized by a testator of a good or part of a collection of goods in favor of someone and that should be respected by the heir(s).

legajo : Bundle of loose papers (usually tied together) that deal with common subject; most common unit of filed papers in Spanish archives.

legal : Legal
 
legatario(a) : Recipient of a legacy (legado).
 
legítimación notarial : Act by which a notary shows faith in the content of a document or authenticity of a signature.
 
legitimar : To legitimize. To recognize a child as legitimate.

legítimo(a) : Legitimate, lawful. See hijo legítimo.
 
lego(a) : Lay, secular. a. Does not have clerical orders. b. In religious convents, someone who, being professed (as a nun/monk), does not have the choice of sacred orders.

legua : League (3 ½ miles); length—land measurement which varies depending on the nation, equivalent to approximately 5.572m.  

lengua : Language, tongue

levante : East
 
levirato : Insitution of the Law of Moses that obligates the brother of a man who died without children to marry the widow.

ley : Law

liber status animarum : (Latin) Books of parishioners, also called parish registers, that record those that needed to confess and take communion as well as pay taxes. In these documents, there is information about the inhabitants of a city, organized by family (head of the family, spouse, and children) and home where age, civil state and profession are indicated.
 
liberación : Exoneration, exemption from taxes or obligations

libertad : Freedom, liberty; privilege, right

liberto(a) : Freed slave

libra : Weight measure, weight which commonly is 16 oz., even though it can change depending on the place; the measurement by which some liquids, such as olive oil, are sold—- it is divided in four cuarterones, which is the same as 16 ounces (in the drug stores this measure has 12 ounces).

libramiento : Deliverance; warrant or order of payment

libranza : Draft, bill of exchange, money order

libro : Book

libro de actas : Minute book

libro de familia : Book of the family, often issued by the government for recording births, marriages, and deaths.
 
libros eclesiásticos : Collection of documents of a parish that include sacrament books (libros sacramentales), books of catechumens (youth preparing for their confirmations in the Catholic church), books of mass stipends, inventories, books of entries and exits, books of foundations, and books of the ordained.

libros sacramentales : Parish registers

licencia : Permission, authority; leave, furlough
 
licencia matrimonial : Authorization to marry for a couple that had at least one of the impediments.

licenciado : Release; licensed, authorized; licentiate, holding master’s degree

lícito(a) : Legal

límite : Boundary

limosna : Alms. Something that is given on behalf of God's love to fill a need.

limpieza de sangre : Purity of blood; a phrase used in the records of the Inquisition, civil fraternal orders, and some other governmental employment records indicating that a person and his ancestry were not contaminated with heretic religion nor the blood of Moors, Moriscos, Jews, or Negros; records showing the purity of ancestry of the person applying for a position.
 
linaje : Ancestors or descendants of a family, especially noble.
 
linajista : Specialist in family lines.
 
linajudo(a) : Blue-blood. A person of noble lineage.
 
línea : Series of people joined by blood. The line can be direct, or colateral or oblique. Collection of people that, inside of each line, come from one of their members, each forming their own distinct line.
 
línea cognada : Refers to people that are joined by a feminine line. Synonym of linaje uterino and linaje matrilineal.
 
línea colateral : Line constituted by the degree or series of degrees between people that don't descend from each another, but that come from a common ancestor. Synonym of línea oblicua, línea transversal and línea trasversal.
 
línea directa : Line consistuted by the degree or the series of degrees between people that descend from each other. Synonym of línea agnada and línea recta.

liquidación : Liquidation, winding up; liquidation of debts
 
litisexpensasa. Expenses in the follow-up of a lawsuit. b. Funds that are assigned to people that do not freely dispose of their money flow, so they attend to the litisexpensas.

lobo(a) : Mixture of one part of Indian blood and three parts of Negro blood.
 
loco citato : (Latin) In the cited place. In quotes, text allegations, references, etc.

longitud : Longitude

lonja : Public exchange, market
 
losa : Tomb of a cadaver.
 
lote : Plot resulting from the division of terrain intended for construction.
 
lucillo : Stone urn intended to hold the ashes of someone of distinction.

lugar : Village, hamlet; place, spot, site

lunes : Monday
 
luto : Black cloths and other funeral devices that are put in the deceased's houses while the house is present, and in the church during the funeral rites (exequias).


abc


Letter M

macho : Male

madrastra : Stepmother, the woman with respect to the children of her husband born of another marriage.

madre : Mother
 
madre de pila : See padre de pila. Godmother in the baptism.

madre política : Mother-in-law

madrina : Godmother, a woman who assists in one of the sacraments of baptism, marriage, etc. (many times the godmother is a near relative), sponsor, protectoress.

maestro : Master, teacher

magistratura : Judgeship

maíz : Corn
 
máncer : Child of a prostitute

mancipación : Transfer of property. In ancient Roman law, transfer of a property with certain formalities and in the presence of five witnesses.

mandas : Bequests
 
manda pía forzosa : A bequest established by decree on May 3, 1811, with the object of forming a special fund intended to help prisoners, families, widows, and other distinguished people that endured the French invasion of Napoleon Bonaparte.
 
mandas pías : Voluntary distribution consigned in a will so that masses on behalf of the testator's soul will be offered beneath one or more names, and distribute determined goods or money in favor de institution or charitable organizations.

mano : Hand
 
manumitir : To free a slave
 
manuscrito : Written by hand

mañana : Tomorrow; morning

mapa : Map

Mar del Norte : The North See; the Atlantic and Caribbean in early colonial records

Mar del Sur : The South See, the Pacific

maravedí : Ancient Spanish coin, sometimes it has been understood by a certain coin and others by number or quantity of them. Their value varied at different times, because of their different quality and metal; because they were of gold, silver, and copper. In eighteenth-century Spain, there were 34 maravedís in one real.

margen : Margin

marido : Husband

marina : Navy

marinero : Sailor

marítimo(a) : Maritime

marqués(a) : Marquis; in ancient times, a lord over the lands situated on the frontiers of a kingdom; in later times, a noble title between that of count and duke.

martes : Tuesday

marzo : March

más : More

masculino : Masculine

más joven : Younger, youngest

materno(a) : Maternal, pertaining to the mother’s family.
 
matriarca : Matriarch
 
matriarcado : Matriarchy

matrícula : Register, list, roster, roll census
 
matrícula de extranjeros : Registration of foreigners/aliens.

matrimonial : Matrimonial, relating to marriage

matrimonio : Marriage
 
matrimonio mixto : The union of two people of different faiths.
 
matrimonio secreto : Marriage that is celebrated and held in secret for serious motives and with the local bishop's authorization.
 
mausoleo : Mausoleum; lavish tomb

mayo : May

mayor : Larger, elder

mayorazgo(a) : Family estate, entailed on the eldest son; a legal term indicating priority right to authority, inheritance, or succession; first-born son with the right of primogeniture.
 
mayorazgo(a) de agnación artificial / mayorazgo(a) de agnación artificiosa / mayorazgo de agnación fingida : Inheritance in which it was established that if the founder did not have the proper paternal line or if the line was broken over the course of time, said inheritance would enter into the possession of another relative, a woman, or an outsider. From there on, the inheritance would be passed from man to man, excluding women and their lines.
 
mayorazgo de agnación rigurosa : Inheritance of land that passed only from man to man.

media anata : Payment made to obtain a title position or benefice original equal to one-half year’s income from the title, position, or benefice.

media noche : Midnight

médico : Doctor

medio(a) hermano(a) : Half-brother (sister), being brother (sister) only by father or mother.

mejora : Special bequest, additional bequest; development, improvement

mellizo(a) : Twin, (pl.) two children born of one pregnancy

memoria : Memory, recollection; report; study account
 
memoria de misas : Devout work that shows the number of masses that should be celebrated by the testator's soul.
 
memorial : Book or journal in which is noted something for an end.

mendigo(a) : Beggar

menonita : Mennonite

menor : Smaller, younger; smallest, youngest

menos : Less

mercadería : Wares, goods

mercado : Market

mercante : Merchant

merced : Grant or privilege given by the monarch or lord to his vassals; these came to be associated with control over income-producing property and required an initial payments as well as payment when a transfer was made by death, gift, or sale to another person (see media anata).

merindad : Jurisdiction and post of a district judge; district whose interests were looked after by the chief town within that territory; township district.
 
merino : Judge that had jurisdiction in a certain territory.

méritos : Merit; accomplishments

mes : Month

mestizo(a) : A person born of parents of different races, usually Spanish and Indian; crossbreed.
 
metropolitano : Metropolitan. Archbishop with respect to his bishops.

mi : My, me

miembro : Member

miércoles : Wednesday

mil : Thousand

milicia : (mil.) Militia

militar : Pertaining to the military or to war; a person serving in the army

milla : Mile

mina : Mine

minero : Miner

ministro : Minister

mío(a) : Mine

misa : Celebration of the Eucharist; Mass
 
misa cantada : Sung mass. Mass that celebrates one single priest with singing.
 
misa de cuerpo presente : Mass that is said as normal with the cadaver present.
 
misa de difuntos : Mass of the dead. Mass designated by the Church to be said for the deceased. Synonym of misa de réquiem.
 
misa de rezada : Low Mass. Mass that is celebrated without singing.
 
misas gregorianas : Gregorian mass. Masses that in remembrance of a deceased person are said 30 days in a row as well as during the burial.

misión : Indian parish under control of one of the religious orders

mismo(a) : Same

mita : Tribute paid by the Indians of Peru and Bolivia; forced labor in the mines, factories, and on public works for which the Indians were selected by lot during Inca and Spanish dominion—minor compensation was sometimes given (see repartimiento).

mitad : Half

m.n. = more novo : According to the new manner of calculating the date (the Gregorian calendar).

molino : Mill

monasterio : Monastery
 
monda : Exhumation of human remains in a cemetery to lead them to the grave or ossary.
 
monición : Admonition, making public the banns of marriage.

monje(a) : Monk (nun)

montaña : Mountain

monte : Hill

montero(a) : Hunter

morada : Dwelling

morador(a) : Resident

morar : To live, to dwell (location)

moreno(a) : Mixture of two parts of Spanish blood, one part of Indian blood, and one part of Negro blood; offspring of Spaniard and zambaigo.

morir : To die

morisco(a) : Moorish, those baptized Moors that lived in Spain and the colonies; Mexico, mixture of Spanish and mulatto blood.
 
mortaja : Shroud. Clothing, sheet, or something else that envelops the cadaver for burial.
 
mortis causa : (Latin) By cause of death. The will or certain acts of liberality that were determined by death and succession of the deceased.
 
mortuorio(a) : Mortuary

mozo(a) : Single, unmarried, bachelor; lad, young man; the youngest or junior

muchacho(a) : Boy, girl

muchas veces : Often

muchos(as) : Many

mudo(a) : Dumb

muebles : Furniture, household

muerte : Death

muerto(a) : Deceased

mujer : Woman; wife

mulato(a) / mulatto(a) : Mulatto, a person having one white and one black parent. A person of mixed race resembling a mulatto.

municipal : Of or relating to the municipio

municipio : Municipality, the territorial jurisdiction which includes the inhabitants governed by a town council.

murió : Died, third person singular in the past tense of morir.


abc


Letter N

n. = nació, nacido(a) : Born

n. = nombre : Name

nac. = nacido(a) : Born

nacer : To be born

nacido(a) : Born

nacido(a) muerto(a) : Stillborn

nacimiento : Birth

nació : Third person singular in the past tense of nacer, he was born

nacionalidad : Nationality, citizenship

nariz : Nose

natural : Native of, born in a given locality; born outside of the marriage contract.

naturaleza : Nature; nationality; place of origin

nave : Ship; nave, aisle, with two or three 

navío : Ship with three poles and sails, with a deck or bridges and many other cannon batteries.

necesidad : Necessity, need
 
necrópolis : Necropolis. A large cemetery in which there are many funeral monuments.
 
nefario(a) : Nefarious. To be called nefarious when there is a relationship between ancestors and descendants, such as between a father and daughter. Child that is the result of a sexual relationship between an ancestor and descendant.

negocio : Business

negro(a) : Negro, black or dark-skinned, native of various tribes of Africa

negro(a) fino(a) : Mixture of one part of Spanish blood and three parts of Negro blood; offspring of mulatto and Negro.

nene : Baby, child

nieta : Granddaughter

nieto : Grandson

nietos : Grandchildren

ningún(o, a) : None, not one

niño(a) : Child

no : No

no. = número : Number

nobiliario : Nobiliary, peerage list; pertaining to the nobility

noble : Noble

nobleza : Nobility

noche : Night

nombramiento : Appointment, election, nomination, commission

nombrar : To elect or appoint; to name, to mention by name.

nombre : Name

nombre de pila : Given or Christian name, e.g., name given at baptismal font.
 
nombre de pila compuesto : Compound given name. Combination of given names without any type of connector (e.g. hyphen).
 
nombre de pila simple : Simple given name. Name that is given to a person to distinguish him or her inside of their own family, to which last names are attached to form the complete name.

nono(a) : Ninth

noreste / nordeste : Northeast

noroeste : Northwest

norte : North

nosotros : We
 
nota : Note
 
nota bene : (Latin) Note. Expression used, especially in businesses or manuscripts, to draw attention to something particular.
 
n. b. = nota bene.
 
nota marginal : Note in the margin.

notable : Notable, noteworthy, outstanding

notario(a) : Notary, authorized official for preparing and certifying public actions, contracts, deeds, bonds, wills, etc. Before 1869, those using this title were usually ecclesiastically appointed, and the civil notaries of that era were generally called escribanos.

novecientos : Nine hundred
 
novenario : Nine-day period of mourning. Condolences, mournings, and devitions between the immediate relatives of a deceased person.

noveno(a) : Ninth

noventa : Ninety

novia : Bride, fiancée

noviembre : November

novio : Groom, fiancé

novios : Betrothed

nuera : Daughter-in-law, wife of the son

nuestro(a) : Our, ours, of ours

Nueva Andalucía : Region of Tierra Firme between the Cabo de la Vela in the gulf of Uraba or Darien in modern Colombia ; the region and city of Cumana, Venezuela

Nueva Castilla : Northern part of colonial Peru, its southern boundary 25 but more than 60 leagues south of the San Juan de Chincha River

Nueva Córdoba : Venezuela during the early colonial era

Nueva España : Colonial Mexico

Nueva Extremadura : Early colonial Chile, the northern part of Chile; the territory of Coahuila, Mexico.

Nueva Galicia : Colonial Aguascalientes, Jalisco, and parts of Durango, Zacatecas, Nayarit, San Luis Potosí, and Coahuila in Mexico (its capital was Guadalajara).

Nueva Granada : The Californias in the early colonial period

Nueva Vizcaya : Separated from Nueva Galicia 1573-1576, included Sinaloa, Sonora, Durango, Chihuahua, and parts of Coahuila in Mexico (its capital was Durango)

Nuevo León : Nuevo Leon, Mexico and its surrounding areas, including part of Tamaulipas

Nuevo Santander : The northern part of colonial Colombia; northeastern Mexican State of Tamaulipas and Texas south of the Nueces River before 1848

Nuevo Toledo : The southern part of colonial Peru, that jurisdiction which from 1559 was known as the Audiencia de Charcas, its southern boundary being the straits of Magellan; Chile

nueve : Nine

nuevo(a) : New
 
nulidad : Nullity. Ineffectiveness of a legal act by the absence of one of the law's requirements of its validity. It is not a synonym of anulabilidad.
 
nulidad matrimonial : Marriage nullity. All marriages that have been contracted with an impediment that was not thrown out are considered null. To declare a marriage null means to declare it never happened or never should have happened.

num. = número : Number

número : Number

nunca : Never
 
nupcialidad : Number proportional to nuptials or marriages in a determined time and place.

nupcias : Marriage, wedding, nuptials


abc


Letter O

o : Or

obispado : Bishopric, episcopate

obispo : Bishop, spiritual and ecclesiastical leader of a diocese.

óbito : Death

obituario : Obituary, book wherein are registered deaths and burials, section of death notices in the newspapers

obligación : Obligation, responsibility, duty; liability, bond

obras pías : Foundation or donation created or given for church work or for charitable works, literally, pious works.

obrero : Worker, laborer

observaciones : Comments, marginal notes

occidente : West

octavo(a) : Eighth

octubre : October

ochenta : Eighty

ocho : Eight

ochocientos : Eight hundred

oeste : West

oferta : Offering

oficio : Occupation, job, work, craft, trade; office, post, position; function; written communication.
 
oficio de difuntos : Office that the Church intended to pray for the dead.

ofrenda : Offering. Gift that is dedicated to God or the saints, to ask for its assistance or something that is desired, or else to fulfill a vote or obligation.

oidor(a) : Magistrate who, in the royal courts (audiencia), heard and sentenced disputes and lawsuits.

ojo : Eye

óleo : Blessed oil used in the ceremonies of the Church.

once : Eleven

onomástico(a) : Onomastic (study of the history and origin of names).
 
onza : Weight that is worth 16 adarmes and is equivalent to 28,7 grams; the twelfth part of a Roman libra.

onza de oro : A Spanish ancient gold coin minted from the time of Felipe III until that of Fernando VII and worth 320 reales, meaning 80 pesetas.

operario : Worker, laborer
 
opere citato : (Latin) In the cited work. Used to prevent repetition of the title of a work that has been cited before in the text. Its abbreviation is op.cit.

oración : Prayer
 
oratorio : Oratory. Place intended to retire in order to pray to God.

orden militar : Religious order of knights, such as Santiago, Calatrava, Alcántara, Malta, San Juan de Jerusalén.

orden regular : Religious order that takes vows, such as that of the Franciscan, Dominican, Jesuit, etc.
 
orden tercera : Grouping of laypersons that, depending on Mendicant (friar) orders, like the Franciscans, Cominicans, Carmelites, etc,, are guided for their spiritual perfection by the rules of the corresponding order.
 
ordinario(a) : Bishop that has diocese.

oreja : Ear

orfanato : Orphanage

oriente : East

originario : Native of a given place

oro : Gold
 
osario : Ossuary. In churches or in cemetaries, a place intended to reunite the bones removed from graves by re-burying them.

o.s.p. = obiit sine prole : Died without issue

otoño : Autumn

otorgar : To set forth, establish, offer, grant, stipulate or promise something usually used when the notary is preparing the actual document.

otro(a) : Other, another

otrosí : Furthermore, besides, moreover; (law) each additional petition after the principal one.


abc


Letter P

padrastro : Stepfather, the husband of one's mother and not one's natural father.  

padre : Father; (pl.) parents; (pl.) ancestors; priest
 
padre de pila : Godfather in the baptism

padre político : Father-in-law; stepfather

padrino : Godfather, a man who assists in one of the sacraments of baptism, marriage, etc., usually a friend or relative; (pl.) godparents.

padrón : List or census of the residents or inhabitants of a village, parish, city, or military unit.

pag. = página : Page
 
pago : District determined by land or inheritances, especially by vineyards or olive groves.

país : Country

palacio : Palace

paleografía : Paleography, study of ancient handwriting

panadero : Baker

panteón : Cemetery, funeral monument where the dead are buried

para : For, to

pardo(a) : Mixture of one part of Spanish blood, two parts of Indian blood, and one part of Negro blood; dark, mulatto.

parecer : To appear, seem, look; manner of viewing, e.g., a nuestro parecer
 
parentación : Funeral ceremony
 
parentela : Collection of someone's relatives.

parentesco : Kinship. Link by blood, affinity, adoption, marriage, or other stable relationship of affectivity (emotion) similar to this.
 
parentesco civil : Civil relationship. Family relationship that is established by adoption between the adopter and the adoptee and the descendants that come from the adoptee.
 
parentesco de agnación : Relationship of agnation.Link that exists between two relatives who are descendants of the same ancestor, coming exclusively through the male line.
 
parentesco de cognación : Relationship of cognation. Link that exists between two relatizes who are descendants of the same ancestor, coming exclusively through the female line.
 
parentesco espiritual : Spiritual relationship. Link that the minister and godparents create during the sacraments of baptism and confirmation with the baptized and confirmed.
 
parentesco natural : Natural relationship. Synonym of parentesco biológico (biological relationship) and parentesco de consanguinidad (blood relationship).

pariente : Relative

párrafo : Paragraph

párroco : Parish priest

parroquia : Parish, territory covered by the spiritual jurisdiction of a parish priest; the church of the parish.

parroquiano(a) : Parishioner

parte : Part, fragment; part, share, portion

partera : Midwife

partición : Division, partition, separation, especially a division of assets following death.

partida : Act, certificate. Register or entry of baptism, confirmation, marriage, or burial, and is written in parish books or civil registers.
 
partidoa. In heraldry, a coat of arms, piece, or heraldic animal: divided from top to bottom in two equal parts. b. District or territory of a jurisdiction or administration that has a main town as head.

partido judicial : District, usually made up of several villages in a province, in which a judge exercises original jurisdiction over civil and criminal judicial matters (judicial district).

parto : Labor, birth

párvulo(a) : Small, young child

pasado : Past
 
pasado presente : Expression utilized to refer to the last month.
 
pasado último : Expression utilized to refer to the last month or last year.
 
pasaportea. License or dispatch through writing that is given in order to be able to pass freely and safely from one town or country to another. b. License that is given to members of the military, with itinerary so that they receive assistance with accommodations and baggage.

pastor : Pastor, minister, shepherd

paterno(a) : Paternal, from the father's line
 
patria potestad : Parental authority. Collection of duties and rights that parents have over their younger children still living at home.
 
patriarca : Patriarch.Person who by his or her age and wisdom exercises authority in a family or group of people. 

patrimonio : Inheritance

patrón : Master, employer
 
patronímico(a) : Patronimy. a. Proper name that derives from his father or another male ancestor, and that originally indicated his affiliation to a line. b. Last name that was given in the old days in Spain to a child and was formed from the father's name.

pd. = padre : Father

pechero(a) : Taxable, taxpayer; plebeian, commoner

pedimiento : Petition; petition or claim presented to judge and each separate case therein.

peninsular : Peninsular, born in Spain or Portugal

penitenciaria : Penitentiary

perdón : Pardon, forgiveness, grace, reprieve

periódico : Periodic, periodical, newspaper

permiso : Permission

permuta : Exchange, usually of two public or ecclesiastical offices or benefices; interchange, barter.

pero : But

pescador : Fisherman

peseta : Spanish monetary unit

peso : Weight; Spanish coin used in colonies

peste : Plague

pie : Foot, length measurement which in Castile was equivalent to 28 cm., and today in England to 30.5 cm., in France to 33 cm.

pierna : Leg

pieza de indias : One slave in good condition; various young slaves or women in poor condition.
 
pila bautismal : Baptismal font. Concave piece of stone with a pedestal made of the same material and a wooden top. They are found in parish churches to administer baptism.

plaga : Plague

plata : Silver

plaza : Main square of a town; space or place for a person with others of similar type; office, position, employment.

plazo : Term, period of time; installment

pleito : Lawsuit, suit, court or judicial action or proceedings.

población : Population; town, village

poblado : Town, village; populated

pobre de solemnidad : Notoriously poor

poder : Power, strength; power of attorney; (pl.) authority
 
poderdante : Person who gives power or faculties to another individual so the other individual can represent the person in court or outside of court.

polaco(a) : Polish

político(a) : When applied to a term of blood relationship, indicates the same relationships by marriage, e.g., padre político (father-in-law).

por : By, for, through, along, over, by way of, via, around, about, in, at; by means of, with, in exchange for, in return for; times, multiplied by

por qué : Why

porque : Because

portero : Doorman

portugués : Portuguese
 
posaa. Toll of bells for the deceased. b. Stop made by the clergy when the cadaver is brought to be buried, to sing the prayer for the dead.

posada : Hostel, shelter

posadero : Innkeeper
 
posdata : P.S., postscript. Also spelled postdata.

posesión : Possession (in all senses); (pl.) possessions, property, estate

postura : Posture, position, attitude; bid, offer; agreement; stake, wager, bet
 
prebendado : Dignity, canon, or prebendary (honorary canon) of some cathedral or collegiate church.

prelado(a) : Prelate, ecclesiastical dignitary, superior of a convent

prenda : Gifts exchanged between the bride and the groom before marriage

preñada : Pregnant
 
presbítero : Priest. In Catholicism, ecclesiastical leader to whom the sacred order has been conferred whose main ministry is to celebrate mass.

presente : Present

presidente : Head or leader of the courts (audiencias) and chancery (chancillería), one of the titles of the viceroy, president

presidio : Fort, military installation. a. Adornment of soldiers that is put in plazas, castles, and fortresses for their custody and defense. b. City or fortress that can be used to adorn soldiers.

pretendiente(a) : Claimant, seeker, petitioner; candidate (for office); suitor (for a woman’s hand)

previsto : Anticipated

primavera : Spring

primero(a) : First

primo(a) : Cousin, child of an uncle or aunt

primo(a) carnal : First cousin, child of an uncle or aunt

primo(a) hermano(a) : First cousin, child of an uncle or aunt
 
primo(a) segundo(a) : Second cousin. Child of first cousin once removed.
 
primo(a) tercero(a) : Third cousin. Child of second cousin once removed.

primogénito : Firstborn
 
primogenitor : Someone's father or ancestor.
 
primogenitura : Dignity, privileges, or rights that correspond to the primogénito (firstborn).

priorato : Priorate, priory. District of territory that has the prior's (head firar's) jurisdiction.

prisión : Prison

privilegio : Privilege, grant, concession; exemption; franchise, patent. Exemption from an obligation or exclusive or special advantage that someone enjoys by concession of a superior or their own proper circumstance.
 
probante : Person who is supposed to conduct test of nobility.

probanza : (law) Prove, proving; (law) proof, evidence
 
prócera. Person of high rank or dignity. b. Each one of the individuals that, by proper law or appointment of the king, formed, under the regime of the Estatuto Real (Real Statue), the class they named.

procesal : (law) Legal, of a trial; paleographic term, handwriting style used in Spain from 1300 to 1500, replaced by itálica.

proceso : Process, (law) trial, lawsuit, action
 
proclama matrimonial : Publication of an upcoming marriage ceremony, whose objective is to discover any marriage impediments in time.

procurador(a) : City representative to Spanish Cortes, local city attorney.

profesión : Profession
 
profeso(a) : A religious person that has professed (taken his or her vows).

profesor(a) : Teacher, professor
 
progenie : Progeny

progenitor(a) : Progenitor. Relative in someone's ascending direct line.

prohijación : Adoption of a child as one’s own.

prole : Progeny

promesa : Promise, offer; vow, pledge

propiedad : Property, land

propietario : Proprietor, owner
 
propincuidad : Quality of propincuo (nearness).
 
propter nuptias : (Latin) Donation that parents make to their children considering their children's upcoming marriage.

prorrogación : Prorogation. Extension or postponement for a specified period of time.
 
prosapia : Someone's ancestry, line, or generation.
 
prosopografía : Description of someone's outward appearance.

protesta : Protest, protestation, declaration, affirmation, promise

protestante : Protestant

protesto : Declaration made before a notary or judge to protect one’s right, declaration made before a notary when a letter of exchange is not paid to protect one’s right.

protocolo : Book generated and preserved by the notary publics.

provincia : Province, territorial division representing different extensions of jurisdiction depending on the country.
 
provincia eclesiástica : Grouping of various neighboring diocese, presided over by the metropolitan archbishop.

Provincias Internas : Interior Provinces; that region of northern Mexico which included the states of Durango, Coahuila, Chihuahua, Nuevo Leon, Nuevo Mexico, Sonora, Tamaulipas, and Texas

próximo(a) : Next
 
próximo pasado : Past tense that just happened. Utilized to refer to the immediately passed day, week, month, year, or century.

pueblo : Town, village, people; in the colonies, a geographical area under the administration of royal officials as compared to the encomienda or mission which were administered by private and ecclesiastical personnel, respectively.

puente : Bridge

puerto : Port

pulgada : Inch. Length measurements, measurement that is the twelfth part of a pie.

pulmón : Lung

pulmonía : Pneumonia
 
pupilo(a) : Pupil. a. Orphan younger in age than his or her tutor. b. Person that lodges in a private house for an adjusted price.
 
pupativo(a) : Putative, presumed. Reputed or had by father, brother, etc., not being him.


abc


Letter Q

que : That

qué : What

quién : Who, whom

quince : Fifteen

quinientos : Five hundred

quinta : Country house, manor, villa; (Peru) group of town houses with a common entrance; (Spain) annual draft, induction of recruits for the army.

quinto(a) : Fifth

quintal(es) : Weight measurement, equivalent to 100 pounds or four arrobas, even though it varies in some places; the fifth part of a hundred.

quinterón : In Peru, mixture of Spanish and cuarterón blood.

quizás : Maybe


abc


Letter R
 
rama : Series of people that trace their origin to the same ancestor.
 
rancho : Ranch, often large enough to be a small community, even with its own chapel.

ratificación : Ratification, confirmation

real audiencia : The supreme court or tribunal of the colonial Americas, the court of last resort. It served as a representative of the king; its decisions were final and only the king could reserve them.

real(es) : a. Royal, of or pertaining to the Crown. b. Coin of value of 34 maravedís, which were called real de vellón or, in some places, the silver real.

rebisabuelo(a) : Great-great-grandparent

rebisnieto(a) : Great-great-grandchild

rebusca : Research

recepción : Reception, receiving, receipt; admission, (law) examination of witnesses

recibo : Receipt (document acknowledging payment)

reclamación : Claim, demand; objection, protest, complaint; (law) remonstration

reconocimiento : Recognition, admission, acknowledgment; inspection, examination

redención : Redemption, salvation; (com.) redemption (of a pledge, mortgage, etc.)

redención de cautivos : The efforts to provide for the redemption of Christian prisoners during the Middle Ages.

redondilla : Paleographic term; the round hand, distinguished by its straight and circular strokes.

reducción : Reduction; a village of Indians converted to Christianity, usually directed by a religious order such as the Jesuits.
 
refrendar : To countersign, endorse, approve. a. To authorize a dispatch or other document through an able person's signature for it. b. To revise a passport and note its presentation.
 
refrendario : Person with public authority who countersigns or signs, after his superior, a dispatch.
 
refrendataRefrendario's signature.

regidor(a) : Alderman, prefect

regimiento : Military unit headed by a coronel

registro : Register, record, record book; registration, registry; examination, inspection, search; entry, record, register

registro civil : Civil registry. Registry in which competent authorities record births, marriages, deaths, and other facts relevant to people's civil state.
 
registro de la propiedad : Property registry. Registry in which the registrar records all of the land in a judicial district, and changes and limitations in law that said goods experience. 

registros : Registers, records

registros civiles : Civil records, vital records

reglamento : Regulation; regulations, bylaws

regular : Regular monk or priest who is a member of a religious order that takes vows.

reina : Queen

reinado : Reign

reino : Kingdom, realm

religión : Religion

religioso(a) : Religious; one who has taken the vows of an order, i.e., monk, priest, or nun.

renta(s) : Revenue, income; rent, alquiler; annuity; government bonds, public debt

renunciación : Renunciation; resignation; (law) waiver, disclaimer

repartimiento : Distribution of lands after reconquest; the assessment of work assignments and the subsequent distribution of those so assessed to their work stations in the mines, haciendas, public works, etc. In many cases, this was an involuntary servitude, especially by Indians in the colonies.

repudiación : Repudiation

requerimiento : Request, requisition, demand, summons; (law) injunction. a. Judicial act that intimates something's execution or failure to execute something. b. Notice, statement, or question, generally made under notarial faith, to someone demanding or being interested in it to express and declare its attitude or response.

requinterón : In Peru, mixture of Spanish and quinterón blood.

requinterón de mestizo : In Peru, mixture of Spanish and quinterón de mestizo blood.
 
responsoResponsorio that, separate from prayer, is said on behalf of the deceased.

residencia : Residence, residing in

residente : Resident

resguardo : Protection, shelter; security, voucher; frontier customs guard

retatarabuelo : Great-great-great-grandfather

retirado(a) : Retired

retiramiento : Retirement

retrato : Portrait

revista : Review, inspection of troops

revocación : Revocation, abrogation; annulment; (law) reversal. Legal act that renders an earlier null and void by the will of the grantor.

rey : King
 
rezado : Prayer or ecclesiastical office.

rezo : Prayer

riachuelo : Stream

río : River

rito : Rite

rojo(a) : Red

rompimiento : Fee payed to the church by the owner of a sepulchre to have it opened for the burial of another body.

rostro : Face, countenance
 
rúbrica : Flourish. Feature or group of features, always done in the same way, that are often put on the signature after the name and sometimes substitute for the signature.

ruso(a) : Russian


abc


Letter S

s. = señor : Sir, mister

sábado : Saturday

sacerdote : Priest

sacramento : Sacrament, one of several religious rites or symbols believed in by several religions (e.g., baptism, marriage, etc.); the Eucharist.

sacristán(a) : Sacristan, sexton, the individual who took care of the ecclesiastical cemeteries. Man whose responsibility was to clean and guard certain ornaments of the church.

sagrado(a) : Sacred, holy

sala : Parlor, hall, lounge, salon; court, tribunal

san : Saint

sangradura : Bleeding
 
sangre : Blood. In a genealogical context: bloodline or kinship.

Santa Cena : The Eucharist
 
Santa Hermandad : Holy Brotherhood. a. Tribunal with proper jurisdiction, that persecuted and punished the crimes committed outside of the populous. b. Departure of armed forces, dependants on the Santa Hermandad, that maintained order outside of the populous.

santo(a) : Holy, saintly, hallowed, sacred, blessed; saint
 
santoral : Calendar of saints. List of the saints that are commemorated on each day of the year.

santos óleos : Holy oil. a. Consecrated oils. b. Consecrated oil that some Christian churches use in sacraments and other ceremonies. The oils include el crisma, el óleo de los catecúmenos y el óleo de los enfermos.

sarampión : Measles

sargento : Seargent

sargento mayor : (mil.) Major

sastre : Tailor

secular : Secular. a. Priest who is not a member of an order that takes vows. b. Priest who lives in religious seclusion.
 
seglar : Does not have clerical orders.

segundo(a) : Second, secondary

seguridad : Safety, security; certainty, assurance; surety bond. a. Small piece of paper, with the official stamp of figures or engraved signs, that is pasted on certain documents to give them value and efficacy. b. Utensil that serves to stamp arms, divisions, symbols, and other images engraved on it, and it used to authorize documents, close documents, and other similar uses.

seguro : Safe, secure, steady; insurance policy; permit, warrant, license

seis : Six

seiscientos : Six hundred

semana : Week
 
sentencia : Sentence. Declaration of the judgment and resolution of the judge.

señalamiento : Designation, appointment, indication (of place, time)

señorío : Domain. Territory related to the señor.

separado(a) : Separate

septentrional : Northern, septentrional

septiembre : September

séptimo(a) : Seventh

sepulcro : Grave, sepulchre, tomb. Work commonly made of stone, that is constructed above ground, to bury cadaver(s).

sepultado(a) : Buried

sepultura : Interment, burial; tomb, grave,; burial place, sepulchre. Site that a church had assigned to a family member to place an offering for the deceased.

ser : To be

servicio : Service, serving; voluntary donations given to king or state; (pl.) emergency direct tax

sesenta : Sixty

setecientos : Seven hundred

setenta : Seventy

sexo : Sex, gender

sexto(a) : Sixth

: Yes

si : If, whether
 
sic : Of

siempre : Always

sierra : Mountain range

siete : Seven

sigla : Paleographic term, abbreviation by use of initial letters to represent entire words

siglo : Century

signatura : Filing mark (to facilitate filing of documents), library number; (ecclesiastical) Roman Catholic court of justice and pardons

sínodo : Sinode, ancient name given to ecclesiastical councils of a diocese

sirviente : Servant

sitio : Place, site

sitio de ganado : Place or part of the land which the cattle occupies

situación : Location, situation

situado : Located

sn. = san : Saint

sobre : About, above, concerning

sobrenombre : Surname, nickname

sobreviviente : Surviving

sobrino(a) : Nephew (niece), child of a brother or sister (known as first nephew/niece or  sobrinos carnales) or of a cousin (known as second nephew/niece or sobrinos segundos)

sobrino(a) bisnieto(a) : Great-grand nephew (niece); that relationship of individual to his great-grand uncle (the brother of the great-grandfather)

sobrino(a) nieto(a) : Grand-nephew (niece), the relationship of an individual to his grand uncle (the brother of the grandfather)

sociedad : Society

solar : Manor house

solar para casa : Portion of land that has been constructed on, or when one is going to build; stockyard or orchard adjacent, or around, the home

soldada : Salary, wages; soldier’s pay

soldadera : Female soldier

soldado : Soldier; (mil.) private

solemnemente : Solemnly

solo : Only

soltero(a) : Single, unmarried; bachelor, unmarried woman

somos : (We) are

son : (They, you) are

sordo(a) : Deaf

soy : (I) am

su(s) : Your, his, her, their

subrogación : Subrogation, substitution

subsecuente : Subsequent

sud/sur : South

sudeste : Southeast

sudoeste : Southwest

sueco(a) : Swedish

sufragáneo(a) : Suffragan, one who is under the jurisdiction or authority of another

suegra : Mother-in-law

suegro : Father-in-law

suizo(a) : Swiss

sur/sud : South

sustitución : Substitution, usually an agreement for one man to fulfill the military service of another.

suyo(a)(s) : Yours, his, hers, theirs


abc


Letter T

talabartero(a) : Leather worker

tal vez : Maybe

también : Also, too

tarde : Afternoon; late

tarjeta : Card (visiting, personal, or invitation card); index card, etc.; heading, title (on map)

tasador(a) : Public appraiser. Person who decides the value of goods.

tatarabuelo(a) : Great-great-grandparent
 
tataradeudo(a) : Relative from far back. Ancestor.

tataranieto(a) : Great-great-grandchild

tejedor(a) : Weaver

temprano : Early

tenemos : (We) have

tener : To have

tengo : (I) have

teniente(a) : Assistant, deputy, substitute; (mil.) lieutenant
 
teóforo : Said of names that allude to God, such as Michael, Gabriel, or Raphael.
 
teónimo : Proper name of a god.

tercero : Third; (ecc.) tertiary; third party
 
terciario(a) : Member of the third order of some religious order. See orden tercera.

término : Term, word, expression; end, finish, conclusion; limit, boundary, landmark; time limit, term, period, space of time; district.

terreno : Tract of land, field

territorio : Territory
 
testado(a) : Testate. Person who has written their will.

testador(a) : Testator. Person who writes a will.

testamentario(a) : Executor, person who oversees distribution of decedent’s assets in accordance with last will and testament.

testamento : Will, a document in which one declares his last will and in which he disposes of his property and makes other arrangements for after his death.

testamento abierto o nuncupático : Will that is dictated by a dying person before witnesses and in some cases the notary and is later recorded by the notary in his protocolo.

testamento adverado : A will—in accordance with local law (derecho foral), especially in Galicia—dictated before the párroco and two or more witnesses, and later recorded by the párroco in his parish records or by the notary in the protocolo to make it a public record.

testamento cerrado : A will that is written in secret and then sealed before a notary and witnesses to be opened after the death of the testator

testamento ológrafo : Holographic will, written and signed in the hand of the testator

testigo : Witness

testimonio : Testimony

tía : Aunt

tía abuela : Grand aunt, the sister of the grandparent

tía bisabuela : Great-grand aunt, the sister of the great-grandparent

tiempo : Time

tiene : (You, he, she, it) has

tienen : (You, they) have
 
timbre : Stamp or seal, especially one that is stamped dry.

tintorero : Dyer

tío(a) : Uncle, brother of the father or mother.

tío(a) abuelo(a) : Grand uncle, the brother of the grandparent.

tío(a) bisabuelo(a) : Great-grand uncle, the brother of the great-grandparent.

tío(a) carnal : Brother or sister of the father or mother, uncle or aunt.

tío(a) segundo(a) : Cousin of the father or mother.
 
tío(a) tatarabuelo(a) : Brother of one of someone's great-great-grandparents.
 
tío(a) tercero(a) : Second cousin of one of someone's parents.

título : Title, name, sobriquet; caption heading; section (into which laws and regulations are divided); (law) title, such as a title of nobility; diploma.
 
tocayo(a) : Respecting a person, another who has the same name.

todavía : Still

todos(as) : All, everyone
 
tomarse los dichos unos novios : To manifest before competent authority one's will to enter into a canonic marriage.

tomo : Volume

tonelero(a) : Cooper. Person who makes barrels.
 
toponimia : Toponymy. Collection of the proper names of places in a country or region.

tos : Cough

tos ferina : Whooping cough

trabajador : Worker, laborer

traducción : Translation
 
tradición oral : Oral tradition. Memories of the past passed on vocally from generation to generation. These memories play a part in the culture, customs, identity, and practices of a population. See also historia oral.
 
tramo : Stretch.  Burial method that consists of dividing the temple, from the presbiterio until the main door, into first, second, and third tramo. Priests and the religious were buried in the first tramo. Laypeople of greater prominence were buried in the second tramo, while the poor were buried in the third tramo.

transacción : Transaction, negotiation; settlement, agreement, compromise
 
transcripción literal : Iteral transcription. To copy the information that is found in the document just as it appears, without altering or correcting the spelling.
 
transversal : Collateral relative. Also spelled trasversal.

traspaso : Transfers of property not involving a sale

trece : Thirteen

treinta : Thirty

treinta y uno : Thirty one

tres : Three

trescientos : Three hundred

tres días festivos sucesivos : Three successive Sundays or holidays; a phrase used in marriage documents referring to the three successive Sundays or holidays in which the publications or banns are made.

tribunal : Court

tributo : Tribute, tax; tribute, respect. Monetary obligation established by law, whose import is destined for the sustaining of public responsibilities.

trigésimo(a) : Thirtieth

trigésimo primero(a) : Thirty-first

trigo : Wheat

trillizos : Triplets, each one of the three children born of one pregnancy

trinidad : Trinity
 
tronco(a) : Common ancestor of two or more branches, lines, or families.

trueco / trueque : Trade

tuberculosis : Tuberculosis

tumba : Tomb, grave

tumor : Tumor
 
túmulo : Tomb

tutela : Guardianship, the authority conferred by law to an individual to care for the fortune and at times the person of a minor; the documents generated from a guardianship.

tutela dativa : (law) Guardianship by court appointment.

tutela ejemplar : (law) Guardianship of the mentally incapacitate.

tutelas : Records of orphans


abc


Letter U

último(a) : Last

un (uno, una) : One

undécimo(a) : Eleventh

universidad : University

ut supra : (Latin) As above


abc


Letter V

valle : Valley

vara : Length measurement equivalent to 835 millimeters and nine tent.

varón : Male

vasco : Basque, of or pertaining to the Basque portion of Spain; Basque language spoken in the Basque country.

vascongado(a) : Basque, native of the Basque country; of or pertaining to the Basque portion of Spain.

vascuence : Basque, of or pertaining to the Basque portion of Spain; Basque language spoken in the Basque country.
 
vástago : Person that descends from someone else.

véase : Look at

vecindad : Neighborhood, local area

vecindario : Persons taken together, who reside in the same vicinity or neighborhood; list or census of the residents of a town.

vecino(a) : Legal resident, citizens of a local town, village, or city, usually owning a home and contributing to the local tax collections; by law this status was available only after residing for a fixed number of years in the town; neighbor.

veinte : Twenty

veinte y cinco = veinticinco : Twenty-five

veinte y cuatro = veinticuatro : Twenty-four

veinte y dos = veintidos : Twenty-two

veinte y nueve = veintinueve : Twenty-nine

veinte y ocho = veintiocho  : Twenty-eight

veinte y seis = veintiseis : Twenty-six

veinte y siete = veintisiete : Twenty-seven

veinte y tres = veintitres : Twenty-three

veinte y uno = veintiuno : Twenty-one

vejez : Old age

velación : Vigil, watch; (eccl.) veiling ceremony of bride and groom in nuptial mass.

velado(a) : Veiled; having received the velación.

velar : The giving of the velación.

vellón : Copper coin, real de vellón; mix of silver and copper of which the coin was made in ancient times.

vender : To sell

venta : Sale, selling

venta real : Sale of real property

verano : Summer
 
verdaderas : Weaponry of a family, line, or individual made according to heraldry rules.

verde : Green

vez : Time, turn, occasion

viático : Sacrament of the Eucharist administered to the sick in danger of death.

vicaría : Vicarage; the territory over which a vicar presides, an area similar to a parish in size but not yet advanced in its development sufficiently to be elevated to the position of a parish; a vice-parish.

vicario : Vicar, the religious functionary who, as an assistant, takes full charge when his superior is gone, the functionary in charge of a parish times.

vicario general : Vicar general, the alternate bishop or assistant to the chief judge of the diocesan courts and head of the curia of the diocese.

viejo(a) : Elderly

viernes : Friday

vigésimo(a) : Twentieth

vigésimo cuarto(a) : Twenty-fourth

vigésimo nono(a) : Twenty-ninth

vigésimo octavo(a) : Twenty-eighth

vigésimo primero(a) : Twenty-first

vigésimo quinto(a) : Twenty-fifth

vigésimo segundo(a) : Twenty-second

vigésimo séptimo(a) : Twenty-seventh

vigésimo sexto(a) : Twenty-sixth

vigésimo tercero(a) : Twenty-third

vigilia : Vigil, the eve of a festival or holy day, as an occasion of devotional watching or religious observance. A prayed or sung Mass pronounced in honor of the deceased.

villa : Town or small populated area that has been granted privileges which distinguish it from aldeas and lugares.

vínculo : Bond, tie, link; (law) entail, entailment in which assets are linked to a family or position (civil or ecclesiastical) according to the instructions of the creator or donor

viña : Vineyard

viñedo : Vineyard

virreinato : Viceroyalty, the territory governed by a viceroy.

virrey / virreina : Viceroy. The personal representative of the king in colonial America.

viruela : Smallpox; pockmark

visita : Visit, call, inspection
 
visita pastoral : Pastoral visit. Visit from the bishop to inspect the churches of the diocese.

viudo(a) : Widowed; widower, widow

vivir : To live

vivo(a) : Alive

vizconde(sa) : Viscount, a title of nobility which follow that of count in its rank

volumen : Volume
 
voluntad pía : Donations of goods for ecclesiastical purposes. It requires acceptance and can be realized by that act of inter vivosmortis causa. All voluntades pías have as executor the ordinary.

vuelto(a) : Verso, reverse side


abc


Letter Y

y : And
 
yerna : In Bolivia, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, and Venezuela: daughter-in-law.

yerno : Son-in-law

yo : I


abc


Letter Z

zambaigo(a) : Offspring of Negro and mulatto; in Venezuela, a mixture of one part of Indian blood and one part of Negro blood; in Chile and Colombia this mixture is called mulatto.

zambo(a) de indio : In Peru, offspring of Negro and Indian  

zapatero(a) : Shoemaker, cobbler


abc


Racial Terminology Found in Latin American Genealogical Records

albarazado : Cambujo and Mulato

albino : Spanish and Morisco

allí te estás : Chamizo and Mestizo

barcino : Albarazado and Mulato

barnocino : Albarazado and Mestizo

calpamulo(a) : Zambaigo and Lobo

cambujo : Indian (¾) and Negro (¼)

cambur : Negro (½), Spanish (¼), and Indian (¼)  

castizo : In Puerto Rico: Mestizo and Spanish. In Guatemala: Spanish and Indian (1/128)  

chamizo : Coyote and Indian

chino : In Peru: Mulato and Indian

cholo : In Peru: Mestizo and Indian

cimarrón : In Mexico and Guatemala: Negro (½), Spanish (¼), and Indian (¼)

coyote : Spanish (½), Indian (3/8), and Negro (1/8)  

cuarteado : Spanish (½), Indian (¼), and Negro (¼)

cuarterón : Spanish (¾) and Negro (¼)  

cuarterón de chino : In Peru: Spanish and chino.  

cuarterón de mestizo : In Peru: Spanish and Mestizo  

cuarterón de mulato : In Peru: Spanish and Mulato  

cuatrero : Indian (¾) and Spanish (¼)  

español : Spanish  

español criollo : Colonial-born Spaniard  

indio : Indian  

jíbaro : Lobo and Indian  

ladino : Spanish (¾) and Indian (¼)  

lobo : Indian (¾) and Negro (¼)  

mestizo(a) : Spanish (½) and Indian (½)  

moreno : Spanish (½), Indian (¼), and Negro (¼)  

morisco(a) : Spanish and Mulato. In Spain: a baptized Moor  

mulato : Spanish (½) and Negro (½). In Chile and Colombia: can also be Indian and Negro  

negro : African Black  

negro fino : Negro (¾) and Spanish (¼)  

no te entiende : Tente en el aire and Mulato  

no me toques : Mixture of Spanish, Indian, and Negro  

ochavado : Spanish (7/8) and Negro (1/8)  

pardo : Indian (½), Spanish (¼), and Negro (¼)  

prieto : Negro (7/8) and Spanish (1/8)  

quartarón : See  cuarterón. 

quinterón : In Peru: Spanish and Cuarterón  

requinterón : In Peru: Spanish and Quinterón  

salta atrás : Spanish and Albino  

tente en el aire : Calpamulato and Cambujo  

torna atrás : No te entiende and Indian  

tresalbo : Spanish (¾) and Negro (¼)  

zambaigo : Spanish and chino  

zambo : In Peru: Negro and Mulato. In Venezuela: Indian (½) and Negro (½)  

zambo de indio : In Peru: Negro (½) and Indian (½)  ​​​ ​​
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