Each record includes a transcript created from the original parish registers or bishop’s transcripts held by the Wiltshire Record Office. The detail in each transcript can vary, but most will include the following facts:
Marital status – the status is abbreviated as B (bachelor), S (spinster), or W (widow)
Banns date – one date of three
Spouse’s marital status
Banns are proclamations of a couple’s intention to marry. The proclamation is made in the resident parish of the couple three months prior to their intended marriage date. If the couple lives in separate parishes, the banns will be announced in each parish. The proclamation is made three times on three separate Sundays. This practice was introduced in order to prevent clandestine marriages and to give the local congregation time to put forward any reasons against the marriage taking place. The fact that a banns record exists does not confirm that the marriage took place. Search the Wiltshire marriage index to find your ancestor’s marriage record.
Wiltshire is a landlocked county in South West England. It is bordered by Dorset, Somerset, Hampshire, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, and Berkshire. The county town was formerly Wilton, where the county gets its name from. Today, the county town is Trowbridge.