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bilateral descent

Definition of Bilateral Descent

(noun) Tracing an individual’s descent simultaneously through the father’s and mother’s line, where all ancestors by blood (consanguinity) are considered related.

Examples of Bilateral Descent

Bilateral Descent Pronunciation

Usage Notes

  • Plural: bilateral descents
  • A type of nonunilineal descent system.
  • Variant spelling: bi-lateral descent
  • Also called:
    • bilateral descent system
    • bilateral kinship
    • bilateral system of descent

Additional Information

Related Terms


Works Consulted

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Cite the Definition of Bilateral Descent

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “bilateral descent.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved August 21, 2019 (https://sociologydictionary.org/bilateral-descent/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

bilateral descent. (2014). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/bilateral-descent/

Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “bilateral descent.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed August 21, 2019. https://sociologydictionary.org/bilateral-descent/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“bilateral descent.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2014. Web. 21 Aug. 2019. <https://sociologydictionary.org/bilateral-descent/>.