"fratello in secondo grado" - what does this mean?

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ARotolante
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"fratello in secondo grado" - what does this mean?

Postby ARotolante » 12 May 2012, 00:28

Hello, everyone.

I was looking at a death record in Capestrano. The two witnesses are listed in a way I hadn't seen before.

One is listed as the deceased's "fratello in secondo grado" and the other is the deceased's "cugino in quarto grado". What does this mean?

I get that one is a brother and one is a cousin. But I don't understand the "grado" distinction of each.

Thank you in advance for your help!

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adelfio
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Re: "fratello in secondo grado" - what does this mean?

Postby adelfio » 12 May 2012, 01:44

Can you post that death record. You can use a photo sharing site like postimage.org its free dont have to join to upload it and copy and paste the thumb nail #1 to your post

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Researching Trabia, Palermo surnames Adelfio, Bondi, Butera, Scardino,Rinella, Scardamaglia

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ARotolante
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Re: "fratello in secondo grado" - what does this mean?

Postby ARotolante » 12 May 2012, 17:47

Here is a link to the image. I hope it works.
https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/T ... 1059418562

If it doesn't, the image is at FamilySearch.org in the records "Italy, L'Aquila Civil Registration (State Archive) 1809-1865" for L'Aquila, Capestrano, Morti (1809) (Registro 1123), image 8 of 22.

The death record is num. 11 for Filippo Spera, age 58.

Thank you for having a look.
Ann

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Re: "fratello in secondo grado" - what does this mean?

Postby liviomoreno » 12 May 2012, 18:12

I'm not sure but I believe that "fratello in secondo grado" is a nephew, and "Cugino in quarto grado" is a 1st cousin.

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Re: "fratello in secondo grado" - what does this mean?

Postby JohnArmellino » 12 May 2012, 21:43

I find both phrases confusing. Take the phrase "fratello in secondo grado" for instance. On one hand, a brother is a relative in the second degree according to the Italian Civil Code. However, it begs the question of why the record unnecessarily refers to the degree? On the other hand, the term "fratello" was sometimes used to denote a cousin in Southern Italy. With this meaning, the inclusion of degree would be expected. Finally, I have seen one Internet source (caveat emptor) that referred to a step-brother as a brother in the second degree, although I have not been able to independently confirm this meaning. Very confusing! Perhaps Livio is correct - it might mean a nephew, the son of a brother. That does seem to make sense.

According to the Italian Civil Code, the children of two siblings are "parenti in quarto grado". In order to determine the degree of a relationship between two parties, count up from one party to the common ancestor and then down to the other party. For example, you might count from the first party as follows: (1) parent (2) grandparent (3) aunt/uncle (4) second party. Thus, the two parties in question would be relatives in the fourth degree. However, the record presented here refers not to "parente in quarto grado" but to "cugino in quarto grado". That is an important distinction since there is a different, colloquial counting system to determine what degree a cousin is. Instead of counting up from one party to the common ancestor, count up to the first generation of cousins (cugini in primo grado) and then down to the other party. Go to http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parentela to see a useful relationship chart. Thus, I think that the phrase "cugino in quarto grado" is referring to a 1C3R or a 2C1R. That being said, I'm not so sure that our ancestors were that all concerned with technicalities. LOL
John Armellino

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Re: "fratello in secondo grado" - what does this mean?

Postby ARotolante » 12 May 2012, 22:23

Wow. This is very interesting. Thanks for weighing in on this, John.

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Re: "fratello in secondo grado" - what does this mean?

Postby liviomoreno » 13 May 2012, 07:48

John is correct about the Italian Civil Code, but the document is before the Unification of Italy and it may refer to the Church way of counting the relationship. See http://books.google.it/books?id=VdxOdux ... 22&f=false

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Re: "fratello in secondo grado" - what does this mean?

Postby PippoM » 13 May 2012, 16:42

One way to solve the problem would be to find witnesses' death certificate to establish the real relationship with the person in this record. I think all the following years are available.
Giuseppe "Pippo" Moccaldi

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