passing, or capable of passing, naturally from parent to offspring through the genes: Blue eyes are hereditary in our family.Compare congenital.
of or relating to inheritance or heredity: a hereditary title.
existing by reason of feeling, opinions, or prejudices held by predecessors: a hereditary enemy.
descending by inheritance.
transmitted or transmissible in the line of descent by force of law.
holding title, rights, etc., by inheritance: a hereditary proprietor.
(of a collection of sets) signifying that each subset of a set in the collection is itself a set in the collection.
of or relating to a mathematical property, as containing a greatest integer, applicable to every subset of a set that has the property.
Origin of hereditary
1375–1425;late Middle English < Latinhērēditārius relating to inheritance, equivalent to hērēdit(ās) inheritance, heredity + -ārius-ary
Related formshe·red·i·tar·i·ly[hi-red-i-tair-uh-lee, -red-i-ter-]/hɪˌrɛd ɪˈtɛər ə li, -ˈrɛd ɪˌtɛr-/, adverbhe·red·i·tar·i·ness, nounnon·he·red·i·tar·i·ly, adverbnon·he·red·i·tar·i·ness, nounnon·he·red·i·tar·y, adjectivequa·si-he·red·i·tar·y, adjectiveCan be confusedheritablehereditaryinheritable (see synonym study at the current entry)
A descriptive term for conditions capable of being transmitted from parent to offspring through the genes. The term hereditary is applied to diseases such as hemophilia and characteristics such as the tendency toward baldness that pass from parents to children.