Find your ancestors in Ireland Roman Catholic Parish Marriages

Explore more than 3 million marriage records from Catholic parish registers across Ireland. Marriage records are a vital source for family history and can help you extend the branches of your family tree. The registers will give you the name of your ancestor’s spouse, marriage place and date, and witnesses to the marriage. More information about the records is provided below.

For each record, you will find a transcript created from the original marriage record. Most records will also include an image of the marriage register, which may reveal more information. Earlier parish registers recorded less information and may have been damaged over the years, resulting in less detailed transcripts. In each transcript you will find a combination of the following information.

  • Name
  • Marriage year - If a year could not be found on the marriage record, the year is recorded as the year range of the register book.
  • Marriage date
  • Parish and diocese
  • Spouse’s name
  • Address
  • Denomination
  • Spouse’s denomination
  • Spouse’s address
  • Father’s name
  • County and country
  • Archive and microfilm reference


Viewing your ancestor’s original marriage record is an exciting part of discovering your family history. For some, the records will reveal additional information about your ancestor’s wedding, such as the witnesses present. Many of the records will also give you your ancestor’s mother’s maiden name, which will open a new maternal line of family history.


The registers were recorded in either English or Latin. Until the Second Vatican Council in the 1960s, Latin was the language of the Catholic Church. Many of the registers recorded events in Latin. The names of individuals were Latinised; therefore, the name Mary may appear in its Latin form as *Maria*. We have included a list of common Latin words found in the Ireland Roman Catholic Parish Marriages.

  • Anno Domino – year of Our Lord
  • Cognomina – surnames
  • Eorum residentia – their residency
  • Die mensis – day of month
  • Denuntiationes – denunciations (refers to if there are any impediments to a marriage)
  • Impedimentum – hindrance or impediment to the marriage; such as a blood relation
  • Matrimonium – the sacrament of Holy Matrimony or marriage
  • Nomina parentum – the names of parents
  • Nomen parochi vel Vicarii – the name of the priest
  • Nomina sponsorum – the names of the parties
  • Observanda – observations or notes
  • Testes adfuerunt – witnesses present

In some marriages, special dispensation would have been needed to allow the marriage of two related people. In these cases, their relation will be recorded as consanguinati, blood relations such as cousins, or affinitatus, related by marriage. The degree of relation will also be explained, for example the record may state consanguinati in tertio grado, which means the couple are second cousins.

Discover more about these records

These Catholic parish registers are an important source for searching for your ancestors before 1864, when civil registration for Catholic marriages became compulsory. Furthermore, Catholics have made up a large part of the Irish population. In 1834, the Commission of Public Education estimated that 80% of the population of Ireland was Roman Catholic. Many of the records date from the mid-nineteenth century onwards. In the nineteenth century, legal restrictions on the Catholic Church were removed and further reforms took place within the church. These changes led to the more formal recording of religious occasions. While searching for your ancestor, remember that Roman Catholic parishes are different from civil parishes. Catholic parishes were often larger and may have contained more than one civil parish. Civil parishes were used for administrative and governmental purposes, although they were originally established by the Christian church in the medieval period.

We have provided a full list of parishes available in these records. Ireland Roman Catholic parish marriages parish list

Explore more Irish parish records.