Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Urbárium Census of 1767

We had previously mentioned the 1767 Urbárium census in our latest Research Tip #12, but we felt it needed much more attention. As previously mentioned, these "records were ordered by Empress Mária Terézia in 1767 to help grasp a better understanding of the peasantry of Hungary. The over 300,000 pages of material contains a wealth of information such as how much livestock a peasant had, who the serf owed his obligations to and the amount of land the serf cultivated. These records only provide the name of the 'head' of the household/land. Most images are available for this collection and the front page [of the website] is available in English. Navigation of the documents are easily organized by county and then town or village name, alphabetically. Archaic or older spelling variations for the town or village name may be used. These records are not indexed by name."

Carl Kotlarchik and Martin Votruba have created and provided column header translations for the 1767 Urbárium census. More information about Martin Votruba and his resources can be found here. We have based these translations entirely off their work, with only a few minor changes and updates.


Kereszt és Vezeték Nevek = first name and surname

Jobbágy Helynek Minémösége = indicates the size of the farm in terms of a whole or fraction of a sessio;  the size of a sessio varied depending on the quality of the land;  a sessio included a house, barn, garden area, cultivation field and meadowland used to produce hay

Jobbágy helynek = peasant’s place (the farm)

  • Belső & Külső = (Internal & External) indicates the location of the land either out in the fields or inside the village
  • Mivolta = the nature of or type of land 
  • Posonyi Mérőre való = Pozsonyi Mero = Bratislava Merica;  this is a unit of grain equal to about 14 dry gallons;  it is used here to measure the land under the house and barns and the garden the size of which is determined by how many Bratislava merica would be need to sow this land if it were not built upon;  
  • Szántó Föld, Hold = ploughland; this a measure of the number of “holds” of land that the peasant had under cultivation;  a hold is equivalent to ~1.066 acres
  • Rét Ember Vágó = meadowland used for growing hay the size of which is indicated by the number of men required to cut this hayfield in one day
  • No. = number

Esztendőbeki Szolgálatok avagy Robot = yearly service requirement; this is the peasant’s days of obligation to work on the squire’s land each year based on the size of the land he farmed

  • Marhás Robot Két Marhával = These are the number of days the peasant had to work on the squire’s estate if he used draft animals;  note that only oxen and horses were used as draft animals
  • Vagy e hel[y]ettkézi Szolgálat = these are the number of days a peasant had to work on the estate if he did not use draft animals
  • Nap = day

Kilenczed = ninth;  the peasant farmer had to give the 1/9th  part of his crops to the nobleman

Adózások = taxes

  • Esztendőbeli Árenda = household tax of 1 florin (gulden) per year
  • Tűzre való Fa = fire wood the peasant had to provide measured in “öly”  
  • Fonyás = yarn measured in “funt” ( ~ 1.2 pounds)    
  • Ki főzött Vaj = butter measured as oil (melted)
  • Icze = 8.5 dl 
  • Kappany = capons; a castrated rooster used for food; castration made the meat more tender
  • Csérke = chickens
  • Tojás = eggs
  • No. = number

Belső ház-hely, és Rétek fogyatkozásának helyrehozása, a' melyből kilenczed nem adattatik = this says that the peasant did not have to give 1/9th of the things he grew in his house garden or in depleted or damaged fields

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Hungarian Genealogy: Research Tip #12


The theme of today's tip is: Taxation Records

Although Hungarian taxation records aren't immediately beneficial to the genealogical aspect of research, they do provide an insight into the lives of our ancestors that church records otherwise wouldn't. Many taxation records for Hungary have been digitized and made available online, but you have to know where to look. In this article, we're going to highlight several of these digitized and available taxation records.

Urbéri tabellák, 1767-1773
These taxation records were ordered by Empress Mária Terézia in 1767 to help grasp a better understanding of the peasantry of Hungary. The over 300,000 pages of material contains a wealth of information such as how much livestock a peasant had, who the serf owed his obligations to and the amount of land the serf cultivated. These records only provide the name of the 'head' of the household/land. Most images are available for this collection and the front page is available in English. Navigation of the documents are easily organized by county and then town or village name, alphabetically. Archaic or older spelling variations for the town or village name may be used. These records are not indexed by name.

Urbaria et Conscriptiones
This collection of records is comprised of censuses, taxation records, urbaria and various other documents relating to estates and households. These documents began in 1527 and date all the way into the 19th century. The front page is available in English and navigation of the documents are categorized under REGESTRATA and IRREGESTRATA, and subsequently under file numbers. These records are not indexed by name, but rather by town or village name. Archaic or older spelling variations for the town or village name may be used and the use of wildcards and other search tips are recommended. These are our personal tips for searching and making use of this database to its full extent:

  • The wildcard characters available are * (which is used in place of any number of characters), ! (which is used in place of exactly one character) and ? (which is used in place of zero to one character). You may also use AND, OR and NOT.
  • All of the records have been indexed to include town or village names and whether a list of names from a census or taxation list is provided. Our tip to find those lists that contain names is to search név*. To help narrow down this search down to a county, you would search név* AND Szabolcs. To narrow a search down even further to a town or village, you would search something along the lines of név* AND Miskolc*. I include an asterisk (*) on the end of Miskolc because I know the spelling of the town could appear as both Miskolc and Miskolcz. Searching for név* AND Miskolc will bring back only 33 results, but searching név* AND Miskolc* with the additional asterisk brings back 78 results. There is no guarantee that each result will contain a list of names, so each result must be thoroughly searched to determine so.
  • More information about helpful spelling variations can be found on our previous article, Hungarian Genealogy: Research Tip #5.
County Archives
These records may be slightly more obscure in locating and obtaining, but they are out there. One specific county archive that I know of which has digitized and made available [some] of it's census and taxation collections, is the Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg Megyei Levéltára (Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg County Archive). These records are not indexed by name. We at Hungary Exchange have created helpful town and village indexes to some of these documents which contain lists of names, and can be found here.

1715 and 1720 National Censuses
Although these were two national censuses, we feel the vagueness of information provided in these documents fits more into place along with taxation records. Both the 1715 and 1720 censuses can be browsed or searched by surname and town or village name: 1715 is found here, and 1720 is found here. Archaic or older spelling variations for names, towns and villages may be used, so take into consideration the above mentioned Research Tip #5 for spelling variation help and guidance.