ancestor


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Related to ancestor: ancestor worship, Human ancestor

an·ces·tor

(an'ses-tōr),
A person in the direct line of descent from which a subject of interest is derived (for example, parents or grandparents; but no collaterals or descendants).

ancestor

(ăn′sĕs′tər)
n.
1. A person from whom one is descended, especially if more remote than a grandparent; a forebear.
2. Biology The actual or hypothetical organism or stock from which later kinds evolved.

ancestor

Etymology: L, antecessorem
one from whom a person is descended, through the mother or the father. The term assumes a direct line of descent, excluding collateral family members of previous generations.
References in classic literature ?
But the same worthy person, when placed in his own snug parlour, and surrounded by all the comforts of an Englishman's fireside, is not half so much disposed to believe that his own ancestors led a very different life from himself; that the shattered tower, which now forms a vista from his window, once held a baron who would have hung him up at his own door without any form of trial; that the hinds, by whom his little pet-farm is managed, a few centuries ago would have been his slaves; and that the complete influence of feudal tyranny once extended over the neighbouring village, where the attorney is now a man of more importance than the lord of the manor.
Both might have been influenced by early impressions; for, if the son of the loyal and gallant soldier bowed in implicit obedience to the will of his sovereign, the descendant of the persecuted followers of Penn looked back with a little bitterness to the unmerited wrongs that had been heaped upon his ancestors.
If the crusaders come in full armor," said the other, "you must be careful not to drown your ancestors.
The wound that had sent E-Med the dwar to his ancestors had not bled, fortunately for Tara of Helium.
1), the reputed ancestor of the whole Hellenic race.
They are faithful pledges of the respect we bear to the memory of our ancestors and of the tenderness with which we cherish the rising generation.
Such a birth requires, as its antecedents, not only a series of carefully arranged intermarriages, but also a long, continued exercise of frugality and self-control on the part of the would-be ancestors of the coming Equilateral, and a patient, systematic, and continuous development of the Isosceles intellect through many generations.
She sold all her property excepting the farm of Toucques and the farm of Geffosses, the income of which barely amounted to 5,000 francs; then she left her house in Saint-Melaine, and moved into a less pretentious one which had belonged to her ancestors and stood back of the market-place.
I say at once there are fewer difficulties in holding hereditary states, and those long accustomed to the family of their prince, than new ones; for it is sufficient only not to transgress the customs of his ancestors, and to deal prudently with circumstances as they arise, for a prince of average powers to maintain himself in his state, unless he be deprived of it by some extraordinary and excessive force; and if he should be so deprived of it, whenever anything sinister happens to the usurper, he will regain it.
Certain moral philosophers, with a due disdain of the flimsy foundations of human pride, have shown that every man is equally descended from a million of ancestors, within a given number of generations; thereby demonstrating that no prince exists who does not participate in the blood of some beggar, or any beggar who does not share in the blood of princes.
For those things, whose unmanageableness, even when represented on paper, makes one gasp with a sort of amused horror, were manned by men who are his direct professional ancestors.
Others carry the matter still further, and inquire how many of his ancestors have been citizens, as his grandfather, great-grandfather, etc.