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Re: quarter loss
Posted by: Bill St. George (ID *****8672) Date: July 12, 2008 at 07:19:06
In Reply to: quarter loss by Regina Roselle of 4315

Regina,

I've been working on genealogy for 30 years or so, and have never seen that term anywhere. It's possible that it means you lost a whole branch of ancestors, because the siblings you descend from had only two parents, whereas if they weren't siblings, there would be four parents involved.

We are all descended multiple times from single families at various points in our family tree. It would be mathmatically impossible for it to be otherwise. We each have two parents, four grandparents, eight great grandparents etc, doubling the number with each receding generation. If you go back just 34 generations (about 850 years) the number of your ancestors would be over 17 BILLION people!, which is more than have ever lived on the planet, so there has to be a lot of overlapping.

I read an article a few years back that said that after a certain number of generations, instead of being decended from more and more people, we begin to descend from fewer and fewer people. In other words your ever widening family tree starts collapsing back on itself. You can get a visual image of it if you take a square piece of paper and stand it on one corner. You're at the bottom corner and your tree goes up, widening more and more until it hits the left and right corner and then it starts shrinking until it hits the top corner.

Hope I've helped some.

Bill St. George


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