[syn: family, fellowship]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
natural family \nat"u*ral fam"i*ly\, n. (Biol.)
a group of living organisms classed as a family in a
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Family \Fam"i*ly\, n.; pl. Families. [L. familia, fr. famulus
servant; akin to Oscan famel servant, cf. faamat he dwells,
Skr. dh[=a]man house, fr. dh[=a]to set, make, do: cf. F.
famille. Cf. Do, v. t., Doom, Fact, Feat.]
1. The collective body of persons who live in one house, and
under one head or manager; a household, including parents,
children, and servants, and, as the case may be, lodgers
2. The group comprising a husband and wife and their
dependent children, constituting a fundamental unit in the
organization of society.
The welfare of the family underlies the welfare of
society. --H. Spencer.
3. Those who descend from one common progenitor; a tribe,
clan, or race; kindred; house; as, the human family; the
family of Abraham; the father of a family.
Go ! and pretend your family is young. --Pope.
4. Course of descent; genealogy; line of ancestors; lineage.
5. Honorable descent; noble or respectable stock; as, a man
6. A group of kindred or closely related individuals; as, a
family of languages; a family of States; the chlorine
7. (Biol.) A group of organisms, either animal or vegetable,
related by certain points of resemblance in structure or
development, more comprehensive than a genus, because it
is usually based on fewer or less pronounced points of
likeness. In Zoology a family is less comprehesive than an
order; in botany it is often considered the same thing as
Family circle. See under Circle.
(a) A man who has a family; esp., one who has a wife and
children living with him and dependent upon him.
(b) A man of domestic habits. "The Jews are generally,
when married, most exemplary family men." --Mayhew.
Family of curves or Family of surfaces (Geom.), a group
of curves or surfaces derived from a single equation.
In a family way, like one belonging to the family. "Why
don't we ask him and his ladies to come over in a family
way, and dine with some other plain country gentlefolks?"
In the family way, pregnant. [Colloq. euphemism]
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
n 1: a social unit living together; "he moved his family to
Virginia"; "It was a good Christian household"; "I waited
until the whole house was asleep"; "the teacher asked how
many people made up his home" [syn: family, household,
house, home, menage]
2: primary social group; parents and children; "he wanted to
have a good job before starting a family" [syn: family,
3: a collection of things sharing a common attribute; "there are
two classes of detergents" [syn: class, category,
4: people descended from a common ancestor; "his family has
lived in Massachusetts since the Mayflower" [syn: family,
family line, folk, kinfolk, kinsfolk, sept,
5: a person having kinship with another or others; "he's kin";
"he's family" [syn: kin, kinsperson, family]
6: (biology) a taxonomic group containing one or more genera;
"sharks belong to the fish family"
7: a loose affiliation of gangsters in charge of organized
criminal activities [syn: syndicate, crime syndicate,
8: an association of people who share common beliefs or
activities; "the message was addressed not just to employees
but to every member of the company family"; "the church
welcomed new members into its fellowship" [syn: family,
Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:
199 Moby Thesaurus words for "family":
affiliation, agnate, ancestors, ancestry, animal kingdom,
antonomasia, apparentation, ashram, binomial nomenclature,
biosystematics, biosystematy, biotype, birth, blood,
blood relation, blood relative, bloodline, body, branch, breed,
brood, caste, children, clan, clannish, clansman, class,
classification, cognate, collateral, collateral relative, colony,
common ancestry, commonwealth, commune, community, connections,
consanguinean, consanguinity, deme, derivation, descendants,
descent, diphyletic, direct, direct line, distaff side,
distant relation, division, dynasty, economic class, enate,
endogamous group, ethnic, extended family, extraction, family tree,
female line, filiation, flesh, flesh and blood, folk, folks,
forebears, forefathers, fruit, genealogical, genealogy, genetic,
genotype, genre, gens, gentile, gentilic, genus, german, get,
glossology, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, group, hearth,
heirs, home, homefolks, hostages to fortune, house, household,
inheritors, issue, kids, kin, kind, kindred, kinfolk, kingdom,
kinnery, kinsfolk, kinship group, kinsman, kinsmen, kinswoman,
kith and kin, line, line of descent, lineage, lineal, little ones,
male line, matriclan, menage, moiety, nation, national,
near relation, new generation, next of kin, nomenclature,
nuclear family, offspring, onomastics, onomatology, order,
orismology, parentage, patriclan, pedigree, people, phratria,
phratry, phyle, phyletic, phylogenetic, phylum, place-names,
place-naming, plant kingdom, polyonymy, posterity, progenitors,
progeny, race, racial, relations, relatives, rising generation,
section, seed, sept, series, set, settlement, sib, sibling, side,
social class, society, sons, spear kin, spear side, species,
spindle kin, spindle side, stem, stirp, stirps, stock, strain,
subcaste, subclass, subdivision, subfamily, subgenus, subkingdom,
suborder, subspecies, subtribe, succession, superclass,
superfamily, superorder, superspecies, sword side, systematics,
taxonomy, terminology, toponymy, totem, totemic, treasures, tribal,
tribe, tribesman, trinomialism, type, uterine kin, variety,
Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856):
FAMILY, domestic relations. In a limited sense it signifies the father,
mother, and children. In a more extensive sense it comprehends all the
individuals who live under the authority of another, and includes the
servants of the family. It is also employed to signify all the relations who
descend from a common ancestor, or who spring from a common root. Louis.
Code, art. 3522, No. 16; 9 Ves. 323.
2. In the construction of wills, the word family, when applied to
personal property is synonymous with kindred, or relations. It may,
nevertheless, be confined to particular relations by the context of the
will, or may be enlarged by it, so that the expression may in some cases
mean children, or next of kin, and in others, may even include relations by
marriage. 1 Rop. on Leg. 115 1 Hov. Supp. 365, notes, 6 and 7; Brown v.
Higgs; 4 Ves. 708; 2 Ves. jr. 110; 3 East, Rep. 172 5 Ves. 156 1,7 Ves. 255
S. 126. Vide article Legatee. See Dig. lib. 50, t. 16, 1. 195, s. 2.