b'Minster MarriagesMike PrattI n two volumes of the Yorkshire Archaeologicalthe Minster was not entitled to publish banns because Journal, Robert H. Skaife has transcribed detailsit is not a parish church?).I do not know either what from the Register of Marriages in York Minster. Itprompted the resumption of marriages.would appear that what is transcribed is the sum total of the contents of the register although there isThe Marriage Act (or Lord Hardwickes no explanantion of why it started and then ended inMarriage Act) came into force in 1754. With the way that it did. Those registered come from allthis a marriage had to be preceded by banns: over Yorkshire and even from beyond so it is not thean announcement within the parish churches equivalent of a parish register. Entries for those fromof both the bride and groom that was publicly the parish of Bishop Wilton have been extracted intoread on 3 consecutive Sundays. An official the table below. marriage licence had to be purchased and In an attempt at clarification we contacted thethe marriage had to be recorded in a parish York Minster Library and received this reply from Petermarriage register with signatories of both Young, the archivist: parties, of witnesses and of the officiating It is tradition that those living within the Libertyminister. Both participants had to be 21 or older of St Peter (and perhaps with the means at theiror have the consent of their parents. Applicable disposal) could be married in the Minster but I doto England and Wales, the Act effectively made not know what if anything is stated in writing aboutclandestine marriages illegal, although with this.I do not know whether the start date for theScotland exempted it was still possible to cross registration of marriages is significant but the timingthe border, to Gretna Green, for instance, and of the break (1754-1886: the registration of marriagesbe married outside the jurisdiction of English was resumed in 1887) suggests that it might have hadLaw.something to do with Hardwicks Marriage Act (1754) this needs further investigation [see inset] (perhaps Date Bridegroom Parish Bride Parish Register No.1692, Feb 16 Lawrence Agar Bolton, BishopJane Peirson St Saviours, York 172Wilton1700, Aug 13 William Harrison Bishop Wilton CristianaBishop Wilton 309Stevenson1722, May 31 James Hanson Bolton, BishopMary Foster Cramb 613Wilton1722, June 10 Robert Blanshard Bolton, BishopMary Kettlestrings Huntington 614Wilton1722, Dec 15 Edward Cook Bishop Wilton Ann Pearson Bishop Wilton 6281739, Jun 11 Thomas Tebb Pocklington Elizabeth Whip Bishop Wilton 11171739, Nov 13 Thomas Cowlam Bishop Wilton Ann Wright Bishop Wilton 11321740, Oct 6 John Smith Youlthorp,BishopHelen Etty Murton, 1166Wilton Osbaldwick1744, Jul 4 James Egton Bishop Wilton Ella Abba Bishop Wilton 13281749, Dec 6 ThomasBishop Wilton Frances Wilson Loundsbourough 1597Stephenson [Londesborough]1750, Jan 13 John Richardson Bishop Wilton Ann Harrison Bishop Wilton 16061751, Mar 30 Samuel Harrison Bishop Wilton Ann Quarton Bishop Wilton 1676BULLETIN 18 345'