[Ads-l] Confusing ancestor and descendant in 1926

Dan Goncharoff thegonch at GMAIL.COM
Wed Apr 8 17:30:41 UTC 2020

A word that I think is underutilized is "descendance", eg, "He traces his
descendance to Cromwell's lieutenant general".

On Wed, Apr 8, 2020 at 8:22 AM ADSGarson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at gmail.com>

> Below is an 1893 citation containing the phrase: "He traces his
> descendant to Cromwell's lieutenant general". I think that the
> statement probably should be: "He traces his ancestor to Cromwell's
> lieutenant general" or "He traces his ancestry to Cromwell's
> lieutenant general".
> Strictly speaking if you trace your ancestry back to a famous person
> then you are simultaneously tracing the ancestry of all your
> descendants back to that same person. However, I do not think that the
> passage below is really about tracing the ancestry of a single unnamed
> descendant.
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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