Portugal, Coimbra Testaments (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.
Access the records: Portugal, Coimbra, Testaments, 1801-1935 .
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Portugal (orthographic projection)-500px.svg.png

Title in the Language of the Records

Testamentos de Coimbra, Portugal

Record Description

This collection of notary public wills includes the years 1801 to 1935.

This collection contains testaments created in the presence of notaries and housed at the Coimbra University Archive (Arquivo da Universidade de Coimbra). Additional images will be published as they become available. These records are handwritten in Portuguese and in narrative style. Additional images will be published as they become available.

A testament is a document that sets forth a person's wishes for the disposition of their property after death. Testaments (wills) in Portugal are written and kept by a notary public. A person wanting to leave a will after death goes to a notary public anywhere in Portugal and, after presenting legal identification, can start composing his will with the help of the notary public. The notary agency keeps the original document and a copy is given to the testator. The testator may also register a will in the Conservatória dos Registros Centrais (Central Conservatory of Records) in Lisbon. This entity keeps an index of registered wills and the place where it was written and kept.

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Portugal, Coimbra, Testaments, 1801-1935.

Record Content

Testaments (wills) usually contain the following information:

  • Name of notary public
  • Date and place issued
  • Name of testator
  • Place of residence and sometimes place of origin
  • Age or date of birth
  • Spouse’s name and age or birth date
  • Names of heirs and their ages or birth date and place of residence

How to Use the Records

Search the Collection

To browse the collection by image:
⇒Select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page
⇒Select the appropriate "Volume number and Years" which takes you to the images.

Search the collection by image comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine which one is your ancestor. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to make this determination.

When searching:
As you are searching it is helpful to know such information as your ancestor’s given name and surname, some identifying information such as residence and age, and family relationships. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name as your ancestor and that your ancestor may have used nicknames or different names at different times.

About the Records

Testaments were created in chronological order in a book kept by the notary public. If you have an approximate date of death for your ancestor, you may search the wills by date. Information in wills can help to find out the type of life or type of individual the ancestor was, can also give information not found in other records.

When browsing this collection it is helpful to know the following:

  • The place where the event occurred
  • The name and surname of the person
  • The approximate date of the event
  • The name of the parents or spouse

For Help Reading These Records

These records are in Portuguese. For help reading the records, see the following resources:

Related Websites

Maps of Coimbra

Related Wiki Articles

Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.


Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.

Citation for This Collection

The image citation is available by clicking on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Portugal, Coimbra, Testaments, 1801-1935.


The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Record collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher and archive for the original records.

"Portugal, Coimbra, Testaments, 1801-1935." Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing Arquivo da Universidade de Coimbra.