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Ever found two dates of Baptism for a family member? The explanation of P

Location
Ashby de la Zouch
From
England
Ever found two dates of baptism for a family member?
One explanation may be due to the letter P.
In my searches of Parish Baptism records I came across a couple of London ancestors with the letter P next to their baptism record. This stood for a 'half baptism'. Half baptisms were given to sickly children not expected to live very long but it allowed the child to be buried in hallowed ground and for the parents to be exempt form paying any registration fees.
Of course, if the child survived, it would then have to be fully baptised with the required fee to be paid, hence the child ends up with two baptism dates.

Full details can be found at http://www.localpopulationstudies.org.uk/PDF/LPS39/LPS39_1987_24-31.pdf
 
Yes thats absolutely correct. I personally have two original baptism certifictes. The first was in Great Ormond St Hospital as I faced and survived major emergency surgery at 6 weeks old...... The other in the local family Parish church a while later

dochines
 
Not quite correct baptism is a sacrament and it is unlawful to charge a fee for a sacrament.
The Excerpts of Egbert (A.D. 750) confirm that as do various national and provincial councils of 1126 and 1173.
An Act of Parliament in 1872 also confirms this
http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~framland/acts/ufs.htm

Though there are exceptions for a few churches and chapels.

Confusion does occur during the period there was a charge to register a baptism in order to raise funds such as those in 1703 & 1783.

In the case of a sickly child not thought to survive until baptised in church the P stood for private baptism.
This was followed later (if the child survived) by being received into the church. Note this is not a second baptism.

Care must be taken not to confuse the P for pauper used when fees or stamp duty had to be paid. Paupers were exempt from such payments.
Cheers
Guy
 
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