Researching Italian Documents

There are many exciting challenges when researching your family history in Italian documents. At, key data such as names and gender is often indexed and therefore easily accessible through our search pages for each Italian language database. However, the records are in Italian and you will naturally get the best results if you search keywords, occupations, and place names in Italian. There is often a wealth of information available in the images of the original documents that can help you pinpoint your ancestors or learn about their lives and families. We have provided some basic tools on these pages that can help you as you work in Italian records.


Italian Wordlists

These glossaries contain words that you are likely to find in Italian genealogical records.

Italian to English
English to Italian
Family Relationships
Last Name Meanings

Reading Italian Records

See example pages from Italian records showing where key information is located.

Falerna Birth Record from 1833
Falerna Marriage Record from 1820
Como Marriage Bann from 1905
Varese Marriage Enclosure from 1925

Contact State Archives

Addresses, telephone, e-mail, and websites for each of the State Archives in Italy

State Archives in Italy

Additional Help

Ancestry offers the Italian researcher many sources of help. Search the Ancestry Learning Center for articles, post a query on the Italian Community pages, or find Italian Research publications in the Ancestry Store.

Learning Center
Community Wiki