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A word to describe the relationship between a child and its parent?

English Language & Usage Asked by chmod 777 j on December 22, 2020

I’m keeping a list of relationships between children and their parents:

{
  child A -> parent A,
  child B -> parent B,
  ...,
}

I want to find a word that describes the relationship between a child and its parent. In plural, the word could be used to describe the list itself.

For context, the children and parents in question are not humans, or even living things. The relationships are figurative, but I think it is safe to ignore that distinction.

Here are some thoughts I’ve had so far:

  • A fraternal relationship (i.e. a relationship between siblings) could be described as a “fraternity”.

  • The relationship between two married people is often described as a “marriage”.

  • If a person is a dependent on someone (say financially dependent on their parent) you might declare that relationship a “dependence”.

The ideal word will allude to the fact that the children are on the left side of the list, and the parents are on the right side.

2 Answers

Parent-child relationship:

An alternative solution is the expression of the hierarchy as a parent-child relation. Celko called this the adjacency list model. (Wikipedia)

Also see: adjacency and parenthood on Stack Overflow.

Answered by Conrado on December 22, 2020

parentage - When you refer to people's parentage, you mean their parents and/or their parent's country and social class

It's traditionally a "where they come from" sort of thing.

Parentage is usually not a synonym for parenthood, the state of being a parent, though it can be used in that sense.

So "parentage list" might work.

Answered by stevesliva on December 22, 2020

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