A

Ab – Welsh, meaning “son of.” See also Ap, Map, Mac, Mc.

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Accadian – inhabitant of Acadia (Nova Scotia); a descendant of French settlers from Acadia who live in Louisiana.  Also Cajun.

AD – Latin for Anno Domini, literally, “in the year of our lord.”  Referring to the years 0 and after in the Julian and Gregorian Calendars.  See also CE and BCE.

Adoption – To take a child into one’s family by legal means, giving them the same rights as natural-born children to the family.

Ahnentafel – German.  Literally meaning “ancestor” + “table.” A system for numbering the ancestral generations before an individual

AKA – Literally “Also Known As.”

Alias – A false or alternative name for an individual.

Alien – A person foreign to the country in which they currently reside.

Amish – a sect of the Mennonite church that keeps to Luddite ways. See Mennonite, Luddite.

Ancestor – A person who an individual is descended from.

Antecedent – Another term for Ancestor.

Ap – Welsh, meaning “son of.” See also Ab, Map, Mac, Mc.

Apprentice – an old-fashioned job-training system, whereby the apprentice was the student of a master at a craft, and was paid less because he was learning the craft.  Often lived with the master, or in the building where he worked.

Ashkenazi – A group of Jewish people from the area of Eastern Europe.

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