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Re: All in the Family

From:JR <fuscian@...>
Date:Thursday, December 14, 2006, 13:12
on 12/14/06 4:33 AM, KB at khyranleander@YAHOO.COM wrote:

> Here's a question for you folks. Anyone know of a language that includes > relational terms defined strictly in terms of distance, not direction? > > I mean, lateral terms like "X is mate of Y" is the same as "Y is mate of X", > and you can write the same thing if you substitute in cousin or sibling in > English. But cross-generation terms are all directional: > > "X is older by a generation than Y" = "Y is younger by a generation than > X" > "X is the sibling of a parent of Y" = "Y is a child of a sibling of X". > "X is the parent of a mate of Y" = "Y is the mate of a child of X" > > I know some languages eliminate some of this, like calling fathers and uncles > the same thing, etc. But the ones I've heard of (admittedly, almost a > negligible sample) seem to require an "older or younger" factor to their terms > at the least. While I doubt any would be so dependent on a family tree graph > as to define terms literally as "seperated vertically one degree and laterally > one degree", anyone ever define AUNT as the same as NIECE, or SON-IN-LAW the > same as FATHER-IN-LAW, along those general lines? > > KB
Acc. to Wikipedia, Chiricahua does this. See ng_generations (though it doesn't give much detail). -- Josh Roth "Farewell, farewell to my beloved language, Once English, now a vile orangutanguage." -Ogden Nash