Frisians - Kinship



Kin Groups and Descent. Kinship is reckoned bilaterally, with a patrilineal bias.

Kinship Terminology. Frisian kinship terminology is of the Eskimo type. Naming practices prior to the French occupation of the early 1800s consisted of the simple reversal, from one generation to the next, of "first" and "last" names. Thus, the son of Hans Koek would be named Koek Hans, and the grandson would be Hans Koek once again. The French introduced permanent, or patrilineally heritable, family names, and at that time people either registered the names they currently held (often with a suffix), took geographic referents as the family name (the name of their town, for example) , or registered their occupation (Weaver, for instance, or Farmer). A special relation exists between neighbor entailing obligation of mutual assistance, and is marked by a specific term of address ("neighbor-man" or "neighbor-woman") used as a preface to the addressee's surname.

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