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Related to Cognatic: Cognatic primogeniture


The status of being the firstborn child among several children of the same parents. A rule of inheritance at Common Law through which the oldest male child has the right to succeed to the estate of an ancestor to the exclusion of younger siblings, both male and female, as well as other relatives.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


n. Latin for "first born," the ancient rule from feudal England (except in the County of Kent) that the oldest son would inherit the entire estate of his parents (or nearest ancestor), and, if there was no male heir, the daughters would take (receive the property) in equal shares. The intent was to preserve larger properties from being broken up into small holdings, which might weaken the power of nobles. It does not exist in the United States.

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.


being first-born. Many legal systems have from time to time and place to place given precedence to the first-born in inheritance. It has the benefit of preserving large hard-won estates. It is not popular with the other children. Concentration of wealth in money as opposed to land has made it much less useful. It no longer applies to ordinary property in the UK.
Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006

PRIMOGENITURE. The state of being first born the eldest.
     2. Formerly primogeniture gave a title in cases of descent to the oldest son in preference to the other children; this unjust distinction has been generally abolished in the United States.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
The term 'family' has been used to refer variously across the Tortes Strait to a cognatic descent group or a more undifferentiated personal kindred, delimited both by generational depth, patrilineal emphasis and optation (Beckett 1983:206; 1963:193; Davis 1998:62; Fuary 1991a:228).
Given the prevalence of cognatic or bilateral kinship systems in Southeast Asia, the volume is a welcome addition to the scholarship on the region.
King (2017:106), while admitting that many of Freeman's findings have stood the test of time, sums up a job well done by this part of his case study: '[S]ome of [Freeman's] observations and analyses in relation to Iban egalitarianism and cognatic kinship, for example, are subject to revision, qualification, and elaboration.' Certainly both are open to elaboration, as Freeman presented summations, but not to revision and qualification, especially in the directions that King proposes.
Establishing purity is not simple because of the Amhara cognatic descent system, which means that there are no clear lineages or dcscent groups of any kind.
2016 Descent Groups among Cognatic Societies: The Dusun Tribes of Inland Sabah/North Borneo.
She thereby overlooks the Caribbean culture-building reflected in family land, which transformed the principles of both European plantation primogeniture and West African unilineal landholding by creating a system of cognatic descent and transmission traced through both women and men.
Methodological Problems with the Concepts of Corporation, Corporate Social Grouping, and Cognatic Descent Group.
Today the Sakai are not matrilineal but follow a cognatic organisation.
Moreover, the author continues to assert the outdated notion that thirteenth-century Spain was somehow unusual in including women in inheritance and adhering to cognatic family structure.
As Kilson pointed out in her research on Ga kinship, Ga social relations were steeped in a cognatic ideology rather than a male superiority ideology.
But kinship in most of Southeast Asia is what anthropologists call "cognatic"-the more individualistic kinship found among most modern Americans and Western Europeans.
(30) The aristocratic lay model, in contrast to the exogamy practised by cognatic kin groups (which typically wish to widen their affinity) involved a disciplined restricting of marriage to the minimum to ensure continuance of the family line.