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Double Cousins

Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:55 am

Hello, I was wondering what the technical term is for people who are first cousins twice over.
On my mother’s side, she had 3 aunts who married a set of 3 brothers (Murphy girls and Lawler boys). On my father’s side, he had 2 great-uncles who married a pair of sisters (Canham boys and Garland girls). All 5 marriages produced children. I have referred to the children as ‘double cousins’, but there is probably a more technical term used.
Can anyone explain this as fully as possible.
Thanks in advance.

Re: Double Cousins

Thu Feb 28, 2019 2:42 pm

I'd say 'double cousins' was correct. I have it in my family as well.

I think I'm right in saying this can have legal implications in the case of intestacy law.

Re: Double Cousins

Fri Mar 01, 2019 8:13 pm

"Double cousins" from me, as well, though I've no idea whether I have any instances. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cousin#Multiplicities

Re: Double Cousins

Sun Mar 24, 2019 2:45 pm

Thanks for the wiki-link. I just made up the term, so am surprised that it’s actually correct.

On a similar note, would you say a 1st-half-cousin or half-1st-cousin? Which way round would be correct? Would I say great-great-half-aunt, or half-great-great-aunt?

Re: Double Cousins

Sun Mar 24, 2019 3:01 pm

I’m pretty sure that the ‘half’ comes first. So half first cousin etc.


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Re: Double Cousins

Sun Mar 24, 2019 5:37 pm

Robbie J N wrote:... Would I say great-great-half-aunt, or half-great-great-aunt?

Now you're making me think.... (No bad thing).

Half-cousins make sense by analogy with half-siblings. With half-siblings, you have only one parent in common and so with half-cousins, you only have one grandparent in common. Fine...

But I don't think that you can have a half-aunt, because aunts (or uncles) are siblings of only one parent to start with. Except, except, except... Could a half-aunt be the half-sister of your parent? The child of just one of your grand-parents....? Hmmm - that would suggest that "half-aunt" does make sense after all.

But really, the thing here is that since it's not a normal term (i.e. it's not one that I use ;) ), then it's a bit of a dodgy term to use. It's rather like "step-grandfather" - is that the father of a step-parent or the step-father of a parent? Or even the step-father of a step-parent??? Probably best not to use these terms until you've explained them....

Re: Double Cousins

Sun Mar 24, 2019 6:12 pm

Good points. I would say step-grandparent who was the 2nd, or 3rd etc, spouse of a grandparent. I would call a step-parent’s parent - a step-parent’s parent. But that’s just me, I don’t know if there’s a format.
One thing I do tend to do is when I would say, for example, a 2nd cousin 1x removed, I would say UP or DOWN, so my 2nd cousin’s child is my 2nd cousin 1x removed DOWN, and my parent’s 2nd cousin is my 2nd cousin 1x removed UP.
When I get to my great-grandparents, 4 out of 8 had half-siblings, so I don’t know what I would call my mother’s father’s father’s paternal half-sister. Complicated isn’t it?
Anyone who knows exactly, please comment!
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