Q:

What is a third cousin?

A:

Quick Answer

Third cousins are two people who share at least one great-great-grandparent. They have parents who are second cousins, grandparents who are first cousins and great-grandparents who are siblings.

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What is a third cousin?
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Someone can also have a cousin who is so many times removed. The term "removed" describes the number of generations cousins are apart. For example, when a third cousin has a child, that offspring becomes a third cousin once removed to the parent's third cousin. The offspring of that child is a third cousin twice removed to the original third cousin. This pattern continues down the line, as each generation has children. The children of third cousins are fourth cousins.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Am I related to my cousin's cousin?

    A:

    One is only genetically related to one's cousin's cousin if there is a common ancestor shared. However, given the complexity of human relationships, it is not impossible that there might be a distant genetic relationship.

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  • Q:

    What do you call your mother's cousin?

    A:

    The first cousin of one's mother is referred to as one's first cousin, once removed. This phrase is also used to denote one's relationship with a first cousin's child. The phrase "once removed" specifies that there is one generation difference between the two relatives, while "twice removed" signifies members of a family that are two generations apart.

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  • Q:

    What is a fourth cousin?

    A:

    A fourth cousin is someone in a family who shares the same great-great-great-grandparents. First cousins share the same grandparents and second cousins have the same great-grandparents. Ordinal numbers of cousins are in the same generation as each other. For instance, all of the children of siblings are first cousins.

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  • Q:

    What is a step cousin?

    A:

    If one's aunt or uncle marries someone who already has children from a previous relationship, those children are one's step cousins. While the term "step cousin" is not considered an official relationship under civil law, it is a convenient term to describe such a cousin.

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