[pur stur-peez, per]
adjective, adverb Law.
pertaining to or noting a method of dividing an estate in which the descendants of a deceased person share as a group in the portion of the estate to which the deceased would have been entitled.
Compare per capita(def 2).
Origin of per stirpes
First recorded in 1675–85, per stirpes is from the Latin word per stirpēs literally, by stocks
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Latin, "by families, by stocks;" in legal use, for inheritances, etc., opposed to per capita.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper