Kin Groups and Descent. All Nogays, including territorial groups or confederations ( bet ) such as the Yedisan or the Jemboyluk, consisted of subgroups often identified as separate tribes ( küp ), such as the Kïpshak (Kipchak), Mïng, Kongrat, Mangït, Keneges, Kanglï, Nayman, Uygïr, Ïrgaklï, As, Üysin, Kos tamgalï, Kazankulak, Ashamaylï, and a large number of others. For example, at the end of the nineteenth century the Kara Nogays remembered the four tribes Kïpshak, Nayman, Terik, and Ming. Although it is suggested that each of these tribes shared a belief in descent from a common ancestor, there has been no evidence in historic times to substantiate this. These tribes were further subdivided into subtribes or lineages ( taytsa, kavïm, tukïm, ürim, uruv ) . For example, the Nayman were divided into the lineages (uruy) Moynapa, Harnalïk, Hazan ulï, Shursha, Kalimerden, Üshkübi, Ökresh, Bakay, Keli avil, and others. The Nogay Kïpshaks apparently consisted of eleven lineages: the Hazankulak, Shiyira Kïpshak, Küdir Kïpshak, Tüyinshekli Kïpshak, Hurama Kïpshak, Shekli Kïpshak, Tizginshekli Kïpshak, Ayuvshï Kïpshak, Otekay ulï, Shabay ulï, and Kartïsh ulï.
Other traditional fictive kin relationships included atatïk, in which one family sends a child to be raised by another family, leading to close ties between the two families. Children raised by another family considered the fictive siblings emshek (kardash )—"nursing sibling," or s ütles —"milk sibling." In another form, an older person could adopt a younger person, or a younger person, sometimes poor, could adopt an influential father (who could adopt more than one child). Yet another form of fictive kinship was adoptive siblinghood ( kardash tutuv, dostutuv, adanas tutuv ; sometimes atatïk tutuv ), in which two unrelated youths concluded eternal friendship and siblinghood. Two such males were known as doslar (friends), and two females as kïymaslar (unparting girlfriends). Between opposite sexes the male was adanas (brother) and the female was karïndas (sister), and if the female was older the male would address her as èptey (older sister).
Kinship Terminology. Descent is patrilineal, and relatives through the father's line are collectively known as kazan ülesken kardashlar (relatives who share the pot). There is a separate set of kinship terms for relatives in the matriline ( ana bet ), who are collectively referred to as nagashïlar. A rich separate terminology applies to the relatives of the women who join the family. The system of kinship terminology is thought to reflect the past importance of the extended family.