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The Dorset parish marriages are marriage records made and kept by the Church. We now have 225, 411 marriage records from parishes across the county covering the years 1538 to 1952. Many list the parents of the bride and groom, which can be crucial to discovering information about the previous generation.

The level of detail can vary, but the records usually contain the full names of the bride and groom, their ages, their home parishes and the date of their wedding.

Some later records include the names of witnesses (often family members), the names and occupations of the bride’s and groom’s parents, the occupation of the groom, and the couple’s previous marital condition.