Definition of hereditary in English:

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Pronunciation: /hɪˈrɛdɪt(ə)ri/


1(Of a title, office, or right) conferred by or based on inheritance: the Queen’s hereditary right to the throne
More example sentences
  • The original constitution restricted the right to vote by property but outlawed hereditary titles and added trial by jury in criminal cases.
  • The passing on of property or titles is also hereditary and through the eldest male child of the family.
  • Haida Nation president Guujaaw handed the writ to Haida runners in a highly charged formal ceremony, with instructions to take their claim of hereditary title to the B.C. Supreme Court.
1.1 [attributive] (Of a person) holding a position by inheritance: a hereditary peer
More example sentences
  • Sometimes the head of a hereditary family of poets inaugurated the new chief of their locality by handing him a ‘rod of kingship’ - proclaiming his title aloud before the assembled people.
  • From the perspective of later developments, the Enlightened Despotism of the eighteenth century seems like a last-ditch attempt to match the personal rule of hereditary princes to the needs of the modern state.
  • The people were governed by hereditary princes called Sao-Phas who ruled in as many as forty different principalities.
1.2(Of a characteristic or disease) determined by genetic factors and therefore able to be passed on from parents to their offspring or descendants: cystic fibrosis is our most common fatal hereditary disease either hereditary or environmental factors
More example sentences
  • They extend their speculations, even forecasting that, by genetic manipulation, they will be able to cure hereditary diseases and defects and, possibly, make a race having superior bodies and intellects.
  • At low radiation doses, the principal concern is the risk of radiation-induced cancer in exposed individuals and hereditary disease in their descendants.
  • The identification of specific genes associated with hereditary cancer risk has enabled direct diagnosis of hereditary cancer syndromes through genetic analysis.
genetic, genetical, congenital, inborn, inherent, inherited, inbred, innate, in the family, in the blood, in the genes
1.3Relating to inheritance: the main objection to the hereditary principle is that such peers are not elected
More example sentences
  • In principle, hereditary succession is rejected by the juristic tradition.
  • But acclamation did not rule out the possibility of hereditary or even dynastic successions.
  • The position was now ‘very different from 1999’ and the time had come to get rid of the hereditary principle, he replied.
inherited, obtained by inheritance;
bequeathed, willed, handed-down, passed-down, passed-on, transferred, transmitted;
ancestral, family, familial
rare lineal
2 Mathematics (Of a set) defined such that every element which has a given relation to a member of the set is also a member of the set.
Example sentences
  • One of the chief stumbling blocks in such a task is the fact that the notion of derivative is a hereditary property for analytic functions while this is clearly not the case for solutions of general second order elliptic equations.



Pronunciation: /hɪˈrɛdɪt(ə)rɪli/
Example sentences
  • If an hereditarily deaf person deliberately chooses to marry another such, they are likely to have deaf children and no one outside Nazi Germany would dream of trying to prevent them.
  • And migraine is a disease that just is more prevalent hereditarily in women.
  • De Lacy remarks that the Tyranny lasted so long because the English, hereditarily obsessed with money, tolerate outrageous corruption and arbitrary rule so long as their commercial activities are permitted.


Pronunciation: /hɪˈrɛdɪt(ə)rɪnəs/
Example sentences
  • The natural conservatism of such people because of hereditariness can provide a useful brake.
  • Known risk factors include age, gender, hereditariness, smoking, hypertension and high blood lipid levels.
  • The twin research will make it possible to study hereditariness and the effects of the environment.


Late Middle English: from Latin hereditarius, from hereditas (see heredity).

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: her¦edi|tary

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