Question about a piece of a marriage record (legitimization)

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Question about a piece of a marriage record (legitimization)

Postby jwazevedo » 21 Jul 2010, 20:45

In this addendum to a marriage record:

http://img180.imageshack.us/i/beltini.jpg/

I understand that the couple are recognizing and legitimizing the birth of a daughter - Giovanna Luisia Beltini. I have two questions.

First, can you tell me the words missing here: "...figlia che fu ????? di Como..."

Second, any speculation why the child would be given the surname Beltini, which is not either of the parents' nor of anyone in the town where the couple lived. (I can't find a record of any sort for a Giovanna Beltini. This is the only mention of her anywhere.)

Thanks!

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Jerry
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Re: Question about a piece of a marriage record (legitimizat

Postby Lucap » 21 Jul 2010, 21:09

Gli sposi alla presenza di tutti i testimoni hanno esposto altresì che dalla loro unione naturale nacque una figlia che fu consegnata al brefotrofio di Como e chiamata col nome e cognome di Giovanna Luigia Bellini e mi hanno dichiarato di riconoscere tal figlia col presente atto all'effetto della sua legittimazione.

L.
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Re: Question about a piece of a marriage record (legitimizat

Postby jwazevedo » 21 Jul 2010, 21:48

Grazie, Luca. So the parents gave the child up to the orphanage (I should have recognized that word), and perhaps they assigned a name to make her untraceable? Now with the marriage they are reconizing the child. Does this mean that they were going to then retrieve the child?

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Jerry
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Re: Question about a piece of a marriage record (legitimizat

Postby MaurizioPerrone » 22 Jul 2010, 00:10

This was very common, if the parent are no married and the child is not recognized from father or mother when the birth act is written then the official in the town who makes the birth act, he will give a fantasy surname for the child. Is not truly to make "untraceable" because certainly the identity for the mother is known by the midwife and the family, perhaps the people in the town who know her. But if the mother no recognize her child, she is free from the gossip from having a baby from illegitimate and also the child is safe.

In your situation, the parent are married some time after the child is born, and they recognize child for their own, so the surname of the child is change to the surname of the father. So yes, the child is with the parent. Also sometime the mother will recognize the child even if she no marries the father, and the child will keep the fantasy surname or take the surname of the mother. There is one million possibility, because every situtation was different.
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Re: Question about a piece of a marriage record (legitimizat

Postby jwazevedo » 22 Jul 2010, 03:41

Thank you for the additional cultural insights, Maurizio. It's interesting to consider that a mother would place the child in an orphanage and then later go back and retrieve her. As you say, every story is different, and I wish I knew this story.

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Jerry
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Re: Question about a piece of a marriage record (legitimizat

Postby MaurizioPerrone » 22 Jul 2010, 12:20

You are welcome. It is important to remember that these words that are written on the birth act, "figlio d'ignoti," "figlio di N.N.," etc., these are legal terms, because the mother choose not to recognize the baby on the birth act. It does not mean that the identity of the mother is truly "unknown," because as I say of course there are always some people who know (midwife, family of the mother), and sometime like in small town, then maybe everyone know.

Even in the situation when the child is not recognized from the mother on the birth act, but the mother take the baby to be the wet nurse and then always keep the baby, even in these situation the child is almost always "figlio d'ignoti" because it is not recognized on the birth act. If you do many searches of the birth act, marriage act, ecc. for the children born illegitimate, you will find many variation.
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Re: Question about a piece of a marriage record (legitimizat

Postby jwazevedo » 22 Jul 2010, 15:17

Interesting point! With the passage of over a hundred years now, what might have been known at that time has become "unknown" now because the official records are all that remain.
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