- an ancestral line; line of descent; lineage; ancestry.
- a genealogical table, chart, list, or record, especially of a purebred animal.
- distinguished, excellent, or pure ancestry.
- derivation, origin, or history: the pedigree of a word.
- the line of descent of a purebred animal
- (as modifier)a pedigree bull
- a document recording this
- a genealogical table, esp one indicating pure ancestry
- derivation or backgroundthe pedigree of an idea
n.early 15c., “genealogical table or chart,” from Anglo-French pe de gru, a variant of Old French pied de gru “foot of a crane,” from Latin pedem accusative of pes “foot” (see foot (n.)) + gruem (nominative grus) “crane,” cognate with Greek geranos, Old English cran; see crane (n.)). On old manuscripts, “descent” was indicated by a forked sign resembling the branching lines of a genealogical chart; the sign also happened to look like a bird’s footprint. Form influenced in Middle English by association with degree. Meaning “ancestral line” is mid-15c.; of animals, c.1600. Related: Pedigreed. n.
- An ancestral line of descent, especially as diagrammed on a chart, to show ancestral history and to analyze Mendelian inheritance of certain traits including familial diseases.