Sunday, 8 July 2012

Vocabulary: Grandma's Sister? -- The Family Tree

The Simpsons
Image from Google Blogger

Last week my student Carol asked me how to call her grandma's sister, I was immediately speechless and could only reply, "I don't know". Well, the fact is that, I think my grandmas do not have sisters, or maybe they have, but I never know they have. At that moment, the Simpsons' family tree crossed my mind,

Featured on:The Simpsons Uncensored Family Album
Image from Simpsons Wiki
 Then of course, it doesn't really help, and so, the best way to find out, is no other than Wikipedia. And here's what I've found.

CousinTree kinship
Image from Wikipedia
And so, it is officially called great-uncle or great-aunt to answer Carol's question, but there is more to that, looking at the green boxes and you will find some funny terms like "once removed" and "twice removed", and what are they?

Reading further and quoting from Cousin in Wikipedia,

"When the cousins are not the same generation, they are described as "removed". In this case, the smaller number of generations to the common ancestor is used to determine the degree, and the difference in generations determines the number of times removed. "

In your opinion, does that make things easier? I think not.

A Little Fact
Quoting from Wikipedia
Image from Xinhuanet
"The longest family tree in the world today is that of the Chinese philosopher and educator Confucius (551–479 BC), and he is the descendant of King Tang (1675–1646 BC). The tree spans more than 80 generations, and includes more than 2 million members. An international effort involving more than 450 branches around the world was started in 1998 to retrace and revise this family tree. A new edition of the Confucius genealogy was printed in September 2009 by the Confucius Genealogy Compilation Committee, to coincide with the 2560th anniversary of the birth of the Chinese thinker. This latest edition is expected to include some 1.3 million living members who are scattered around the world today."

once /twice removed


Simpsons Wiki

Family Tree @ Wikipedia

Cousin @ Wikipedia

Confucius @ Wikipedia