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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
a genetic/hereditary condition (=that is passed from parent to child)
▪ The disease is a genetic condition that eventually causes blindness.
a hereditary/inherited disease (=that is passed from parent to child)
▪ Parents are offered screening for some hereditary diseases.
▪ What occurred was the expansion and deepening of its concepts to include racial and hereditary factors.
▪ He wondered whether it was a hereditary factor, passed down from her father, gained by him through osmosis.
▪ Unsoundness which could be due to hereditary factors would be a good reason for rejecting the mare.
▪ This hereditary factor means that there is often a connection between the physical appearance of an individual and it s temperament.
▪ More important information about the influence of hereditary factors in ulcer disease has been derived from studies of twins.
▪ In addition to cancer inductions, ionizing radiation may have significant effects on pre-natal development and on genetic or hereditary factors.
▪ Further, the chromosomes had precisely the properties postulated by Mendel as belonging to his hereditary factors.
▪ For others, it's the removal of the hereditary peers or the Macpherson inquiry into the Stephen Lawrence case.
▪ But the hereditary peers provide a ballast which distorts any pretence at representativeness.
▪ The defeat is the second inflicted on the Government since the expulsion of hereditary peers.
▪ Viscount Astor, a hardworking and professional hereditary Peer.
▪ Until his party's death, a hereditary peer, Lord Milford, was the sole Communist in parliament.
▪ The remaining 275 hereditary peers state no preference, though they would mostly vote Tory if pushed.
▪ Ironically, the hereditary peers thus became the only people who have the right to democratic representation in the second chamber.
▪ That would outrage the Tories, who would lose their last hereditary peers.
▪ The hereditary principle is only as good as heredity's next spin of the wheel.
▪ Thirdly, again helped by circumstances, he had to some extent ended the hereditary principle as applying to the emperorship.
▪ The group who were the most uncompromising in their attachment to divine and hereditary right were the Nonjurors.
▪ John was a substantial magnate but, in terms of land held in hereditary right, not one of the first rank.
▪ It found itself unable to prevent the pomeshchiks from buying and selling their estates and rapidly establishing defacto hereditary rights of ownership.
▪ Some forms of deafness are hereditary.
▪ However, the period immediately after the Conquest saw short-lived hereditary surnames beginning to emerge.
▪ It found itself unable to prevent the pomeshchiks from buying and selling their estates and rapidly establishing defacto hereditary rights of ownership.
▪ It was rather a kind of oligarchy, with a strong hereditary element in its composition.
▪ Man-eating, he claimed, was not hereditary.
▪ The counts are hereditary rulers whose families have long and famous histories.
▪ The system of reversion could also be used, as we have seen, to establish something near to defacto hereditary tenure.
▪ This hereditary factor means that there is often a connection between the physical appearance of an individual and it s temperament.
▪ Where evidence is available, some kind of hereditary comital succession seems always to have been normal.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Hereditary \He*red"i*ta*ry\, a. [L. hereditarius, fr. hereditas heirship, inheritance, fr. heres heir: cf. F. h['e]r['e]ditaire. See Heir.]

  1. Descended, or capable of descending, from an ancestor to an heir at law; received or passing by inheritance, or that must pass by inheritance; as, an hereditary estate or crown.

  2. Transmitted, or capable of being transmitted, as a constitutional quality or condition from a parent to a child; as, hereditary pride, bravery, disease.

    Syn: Ancestral; patrimonial; inheritable.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

early 15c., hereditarie, from Latin hereditarius, from hereditas (see heredity).


a. 1 which is passed on as inheritance, by last will or intestate 2 (of a title, honor or right) legally granted to somebody's descendant after that person's death. 3 (of a person) holding a legally hereditary title or rank 4 (of a disease or trait) passed from a parent to offspring in the genes n. A hereditary ruler; a hereditary peer in the House of Lords.

  1. adj. tending to occur among members of a family usually by heredity; "an inherited disease"; "familial traits"; "genetically transmitted features" [syn: familial, genetic, inherited, transmitted, transmissible]

  2. inherited or inheritable by established rules (usually legal rules) of descent; "ancestral home"; "ancestral lore"; "hereditary monarchy"; "patrimonial estate"; "transmissible tradition" [syn: ancestral, patrimonial, transmissible]


Usage examples of "hereditary".

It seems strange that the Moslim peoples, although the theory of Islam never attributed an hereditary character to the Khalifate, attached so high a value to the Abbasid name, that they continued unanimously to acknowledge the Khalifate of Bagdad for centuries during which it possessed no influence.

The southwest corner of Anshan contains the Persian highlands, whose clan leader was Cyrus the Achaemenid, hereditary lord of Anshan.

But Adams adamantly opposed hereditary monarchy and hereditary aristocracy in America, as well as all hereditary titles, honors, or distinctions of any kind--it was why he, like Jefferson and Franklin, strongly opposed the Society of the Cincinnati, the association restricted to Continental Army officers, which had a hereditary clause in its rules whereby membership was passed on to eldest sons.

The people of Massachusetts were to have the sole and exclusive right of governing themselves, and in an article intended to prevent the formation of a hereditary monarchy, an expanded version of a similar article in the Virginia constitution, Adams wrote: No man, nor corporation or association of men have any other title to obtain advantages or particular and exclusive privileges distinct from those of the community, than what arises from the consideration of services rendered to the public.

A hereditary monarchy could be a republic, Adams held, as England demonstrated, and hereditary aristocracies could be usefully employed in balanced governments, as in the House of Lords.

Were Adams to be elected, warned the Boston Chronicle, the principle of hereditary succession would be imposed on America, to make way for John Quincy.

Even now, no one knows for sure how much of genius is hereditary and how much is environmental, but grant me the premise.

Kings were elected Emperor, then, after the end of the First Baltic War in 1420, when Harold I was on the Throne, the Imperial Crown was declared to be hereditary in the Anglo French Kings and the Plantagenet line.

Although the Iroquois were thus at peace with their English neighbors, there was a bitter enmity between them and the French settlers of Canada, who had espoused the cause of their hereditary foes, the tribes dwelling along the St.

Between them, by itself, upon a strip of scarlet velvet, hung an old cavalry sabre, once the property of Don Enrique Gould, the hero of the Occidental Province, presented by Don Jose Avellanos, the hereditary friend of the family.

His indignation was kindled by the report, that a rival chieftain, that Sarus, the personal enemy of Adolphus, and the hereditary foe of the house of Balti, had been received into the palace.

The bioengineering tour de force that had created Cerberi had also screwed up their hereditary instincts.

Edward, Duke and Earl of Buckingham, Earl and Baron of Stafford, Prince of Brecknock, Count of Perche in Normandy, Knight of the Garter, hereditary Lord High Steward, and, in virtue of the blood of Bohun, Lord High Constable of England.

In the beginning of February, the hereditary prince of Brunswick, with the detachment of the allied army under his command, began his march from Chemnitz in Saxony for Westphalia, where he safely arrived, after having assisted at a long conference in Hamelen, with his father the reigning duke, his uncle prince Ferdinand, and some principal members of the regency of Hanover.

In the process, the Hayashi family, in the generations after Razan, became securely fixed as the official Confucian advisers to the shogunate and the hereditary heads of a Confucian academy in Edo.