Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know


[an-ses-tree or, esp. British, -suh-stree] /ˈæn sɛs tri or, esp. British, -sə stri/
noun, plural ancestries.
family or ancestral descent; lineage.
honorable or distinguished descent:
famous by title and ancestry.
a series of ancestors:
His ancestry settled Utah.
the inception or origin of a phenomenon, object, idea, or style.
the history or developmental process of a phenomenon, object, idea, or style.
Origin of ancestry
1300-50; Middle English, equivalent to ancestre ancestor + -y3; replacing Middle English aunce(s)trie < Anglo-French
1. pedigree, genealogy, stock. 3. family, line. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for ancestry
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But they were good enough for the occasion and their very form was sacred by ancestry.

    Ande Trembath Matthew Stanley Kemp
  • Norman ancestry, is, however, not always to be assumed in this case.

    The Romance of Names Ernest Weekley
  • In regard to their ancestry it is very difficult to trace back to the original stock from which they came.

    Modern Persia Mooshie G. Daniel
  • To find the beginning of his ancestry, we must reach far back into history.

    The Huguenots in France Samuel Smiles.
  • His father was a man of unmingled African extraction and his mother a white woman of respectable New England ancestry.

    The History of the Negro Church Carter Godwin Woodson
British Dictionary definitions for ancestry


noun (pl) -tries
lineage or descent, esp when ancient, noble, or distinguished
ancestors collectively
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for ancestry

early 14c., from Old French ancesserie "ancestry, ancestors, forefathers," from ancestre (see ancestor); spelling modified in English by influence of ancestor.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for ancestry

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for ancestry

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for ancestry