ancestry

noun an·ces·try \ ˈan-ˌses-trē \
Updated on: 12 May 2018

Definition of ancestry

1 : line of descent : lineage; especially : honorable, noble, or aristocratic descent
2 : persons initiating or comprising a line of descent : ancestors

Examples of ancestry in a Sentence

  1. They claim to be of noble ancestry.

  2. a person of unknown ancestry

  3. She claims to be able to trace her ancestry all the way back to the earliest settlers.

Recent Examples of ancestry from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ancestry.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of ancestry

14th century

in the meaning defined at sense 1

See Words from the same year
NEW! Time Traveler

ANCESTRY Defined for English Language Learners

ancestry

Definition of ancestry for English Language Learners

  • : a person's ancestors : the people who were in your family in past times


ANCESTRY Defined for Kids

ancestry

noun an·ces·try \ ˈan-ˌse-strē \

Definition of ancestry for Students

plural ancestries
: a person's ancestors


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up ancestry? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

a case containing an explosive

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

May 2018 Words of the Day Quiz

  • spring-flowers
  • Which is a synonym of raillery?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!