from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Related on or descended from the father's or male side.
  • adj. Coming from a common source; akin.
  • n. A relative on the father's or male side only.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A relative whose relation is traced only through male members of the family.
  • adj. Related to someone by male connections or on the paternal side of the family.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Related or akin by the father's side; also, sprung from the same male ancestor; ; in ths sense it is a correlative of uterine.
  • adj. Allied; akin.
  • n. A relative whose relationship can be traced exclusively through males.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Specifically, a kinsman whose connection is traceable exclusively through males; more generally, any male relation by the father's side. See agnati.
  • Related or akin on the father's side.
  • Allied in kind; from a common source: as, “agnate words,” Pownall, Study of Antiquities, p. 168.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. one related on the father's side
  • adj. related on the father's side


Latin agnātus, past participle of agnāscī, to become an agnate : ad-, ad- + nāscī, to be born; see genə- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
from Latin agnātus ("paternal kinsman"). (Wiktionary)



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  • See enate.

    May 10, 2015

  • Our genes in a way are our fate
    Prescribing each talent and trait.
    I wish I could choose
    More maternal dues
    And work with a few less agnate.

    January 15, 2015

  • "This was Cincinnati—the capital of pork, the first truly American city—sprawled before the eyes of two little boys under the momentary aegis of one Mike Shaughnessy, truck driver, half-hearted Lothario, collector of children, poor Irish agnate, known in high school as that fucking Irish fuck."
    "Twins" by C.E. Morgan in The New Yorker, June 14 & 21, 2010, page 123

    July 13, 2010