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n. a grandfather’s grandfather; a writ for claiming land inheritance from such a person

If you believe his stories, Joe’s tresayle was Ulysses S Grant.

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Google like a boss!

This is relevant to librarian-ing. [keyword] is a great method for searching our finding aids.  

Useful informations

I had a Uni class devoted to this.

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Emma Grant: trashyfiction: this is why I love linguistic anthro so much....


this is why I love linguistic anthro so much. fascinating stuff. there’s a constant interplay between speech and thought.


To say, “This is my uncle,” in Chinese, you have no choice but to encode more information about said uncle. The language requires that you denote the side the uncle is on, whether he’s related by marriage or birth and, if it’s your father’s brother, whether he’s older or younger.

“All of this information is obligatory. Chinese doesn’t let me ignore it,” says Chen. “In fact, if I want to speak correctly, Chinese forces me to constantly think about it.”

This got Chen wondering: Is there a connection between language and how we think and behave? In particular, Chen wanted to know: does our language affect our economic decisions?

Chen designed a study — which he describes in detail in this blog post — to look at how language might affect individual’s ability to save for the future. According to his results, it does — big time.

While “futured languages,” like English, distinguish between the past, present and future, “futureless languages,” like Chinese, use the same phrasing to describe the events of yesterday, today and tomorrow. Using vast inventories of data and meticulous analysis, Chen found that huge economic differences accompany this linguistic discrepancy. Futureless language speakers are 30 percent more likely to report having saved in any given year than futured language speakers. (This amounts to 25 percent more savings by retirement, if income is held constant.) Chen’s explanation: When we speak about the future as more distinct from the present, it feels more distant — and we’re less motivated to save money now in favor of monetary comfort years down the line.

But that’s only the beginning. There’s a wide field of research on the link between language and both psychology and behavior. Here, a few fascinating examples:

Navigation and Pormpuraawans
In Pormpuraaw, an Australian Aboriginal community, you wouldn’t refer to an object as on your “left” or “right,” but rather as “northeast” or “southwest,” writes Stanford psychology professor Lera Boroditsky (and an expert in linguistic-cultural connections) in the Wall Street Journal. About a third of the world’s languages discuss space in these kinds of absolute terms rather than the relative ones we use in English, according to Boroditsky. “As a result of this constant linguistic training,” she writes, “speakers of such languages are remarkably good at staying oriented and keeping track of where they are, even in unfamiliar landscapes.” On a research trip to Australia, Boroditsky and her colleague found that Pormpuraawans, who speak Kuuk Thaayorre, not only knew instinctively in which direction they were facing, but also always arranged pictures in a temporal progression from east to west.

Blame and English Speakers
In the same article, Boroditsky notes that in English, we’ll often say that someone broke a vase even if it was an accident, but Spanish and Japanese speakers tend to say that the vase broke itself. Boroditsky describes a study by her student Caitlin Fausey in which English speakers were much more likely to remember who accidentally popped balloons, broke eggs, or spilled drinks in a video than Spanish or Japanese speakers. (Guilt alert!) Not only that, but there’s a correlation between a focus on agents in English and our criminal-justice bent toward punishing transgressors rather than restituting victims, Boroditsky argues.

Color among Zuñi and Russian Speakers
Our ability to distinguish between colors follows the terms in which we describe them, as Chen notes in the academic paper in which he presents his research (forthcoming in the American Economic Review; PDF here). A 1954 study found that Zuñi speakers, who don’t differentiate between orange and yellow, have trouble telling them apart. Russian speakers, on the other hand, have separate words for light blue (goluboy) and dark blue (siniy). According to a 2007 study, they’re better than English speakers at picking out blues close to the goluboy/siniy threshold.

Gender in Finnish and Hebrew
In Hebrew, gender markers are all over the place, whereas Finnish doesn’t mark gender at all, Boroditsky writes in Scientific American (PDF). A study done in the 1980s found that, yup, thought follows suit: kids who spoke Hebrew knew their own genders a year earlier than those who grew up speaking Finnish. (Speakers of English, in which gender referents fall in the middle, were in between on that timeline, too.)

this is why I love linguistic anthropology so much, it’s fascinating stuff.  There’s a constant interplay between speech and thought. 

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You’re welcome

(Source: gyarados, via captainjeffwinger)

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2/25/11 - Update

Two terms updated:

  • Abstract
  • Scots-Irish

New terms:

  • Accadian
  • Amish
  • Apprentice
  • Aunt
  • Bachelor
  • Cajun
  • Census
  • Codicil
  • Cousin
  • d’Aboville Numbers
  • Extract
  • Grandparent
  • Husband
  • Illegitimate
  • Indenture
  • In-law
  • Late
  • Legacy
  • Luddite
  • Mennonite
  • Namesake
  • Necrology
  • Parent
  • Sibling
  • Spinster
  • Spouse
  • Step-
  • Transcript
  • Translation
  • Uncle
  • Wife

Added letter:

  • U

Added link to Cyndi’s List of Genealogical Dictionaries


Uncle – the brother of a person’s father or mother.  Also, the husband of one’s Aunt.


This list is in no way complete, and most people will have different needs and interests as far as subjects go.  One person might be most interested by Scandinavian terms or traditions, while another might need to know Latin and Legal terms.  Don’t assume that simply because it is not on this list, I felt it unimportant, these are merely the terms I’ve run across in my own Genealogical Pursuits.

I will be infrequently adding more, so if you have words you think I should add to this list, feel free to let me know.

Other Genealogical Dictionaries:

Genealogy Dictionary

Dictionary of Genealogy & Archaic Terms

A list of Genealogy and Name Dictionaries

Cyndi’s List—Genealogical Dictionaries

1 note


Widow/Widower – (f/m) A woman or man whose spouse is deceased.

Wife – a married woman.  See also Spouse, Husband.

Will – A legal document dealing with the disposition of one’s estate.


Toponym – A surname based on place or object, usually a name that is proceeded by a designation—de, of, von, or van, among many others.

Transcript – a word-for-word handwritten or typed document taken from an original source.  Considered a Secondary source, due to possible transcripter’s error.

Translation – very important in genealogy, as all lines eventually go back to another language.  Also used in transcription, abstracts, and extracts to make a source document more readable.  Considered a Secondary source, as the Primary may word things slightly or even very differently, but the translator missed a nuance.

Troubles, The – The term for a period of strife in Ireland where they fought about whether to stay part of the UK or become a Republic of their own, leading to the formation of Northern Ireland (still ruled by the UK today) and the Republic of Ireland, and leading to riots in Northern Ireland in the 60s and the formation of several militant groups, specifically the IRA (Irish Republican Army), with violence still continuing even today.

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