Glossary, Names


  • BMD = Births, Marriages, Deaths. The most important records for tracking ancestors. BMD is the usual term in Britain, BDM can be found elsewhere.
  • FMP = Find My Past, a subscription family history records site.
  • GR = Genes Reunited, a UK family tree site.
  • IGI = International Genealogical Index. Cataloguing records from around the world, run by LDS. This is online at the familysearch website, and many of the actual records can be viewed at local/national LDS centres – now called Family Search Centers.
  • LDS = Church of Latter Day Saints (the Mormons).
  • MI = Memorial Inscription?
  • mn = maiden name.
  • PR = parish register.
  • TNA = The National Archives (for UK/England). There are Scottish and Irish versions – see Research Links page.


Some common nicknames/pet names/short names/abbreviations in the family records. Wikipedia has some more, and derivations.


Bob        Robert
Bert        Bertram, Albert, Hubert etc
Bill        William
Frank       Francis
Fred        Alfred, Wilfred, Frederick
Harry       Henry
Jack, Jno   John, Jonathan


Bessie, Betty: Elizabeth
Etty, Hettie: Esther
Fanny: Frances
Gertie: Gertrude
Lily Lilian
Minnie: Wilhelmina or Mary
Nellie, Nell: Eleanor, Ellen or Helen
Peggy, Meg: Margaret
Polly, Molly: Mary


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