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see clanclan,
social group based on actual or alleged unilineal descent from a common ancestor. Such groups have been known in all parts of the world and include some that claim the parentage or special protection of an animal, plant, or other object (see totem).
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(ANTHROPOLOGY) the grouping of two or more CLANS who claim a common ancestor, which may be mythical or nonhuman (see TOTEMISM).
Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a form of social organization, intermediate between the genos and phyle, in Athens and other states of preclassical Greece. A phratry generally had its own governing bodies and religion. In modern times, the term “phratry” was employed by L. H. Morgan, who discovered a similar social organization among the North American Indians. The phratry was an exogamous group of related clans; that is, its members married into other phratries. A dual organization of two phratries constituted a tribe. The principal function of a dual-phratric organization was to regulate exchanges. In later stages of social development, the division into phratries was not necessarily dual: tribes of three phratries also existed. In its later forms, the phratry was sometimes endogamous.


Morgan, L. H. Drevnee obshchestvo, 2nd ed. Leningrad, 1935. (Translated from English.)
Zolotarev, A. M. Rodovoi stroi i pervobytnaia mifologiia. Moscow, 1964.
Semenov, Iu. I. Proiskhozhdenie braka isem’i. Moscow, 1974.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
78 When the adjudication takes place, the phratriarch shall not administer the vote about the boys to the whole phratry until the members of the introducer's own thiasos have voted secretly, taking their ballot from the altar.
This decree provides for (a) an immediate adjudication, concerning their membership of the phratry (18-19), by the phrateres, of those who have not already undergone an adjudication according to the law of the Demotionidae (13-26); (b) a regular, annual adjudication, concerning membership of the phratry (36-8), under the presidency of the phratriarch, from which a rejected candidate may appeal to the Demotionidae, in which case the oikos of the Deceleans is to elect synegoroi to state the case against him (26-64); (c) the publication by the priest at Decelea of the decree and the priestly dues (64-8).
What is most clearly new is the first clause, that `the three witnesses, who it is said are to be provided for the anakrisis' (a requirement which must have been first stated in the law of the Demotionidae, or else in a decree which is not on the stele), are to come from the introducer's own thiasos if possible, but `from the other phrateres' otherwise (71-8).(15) The bulk of the decree is concerned with a regular adjudication, concerning admission to the phratry (89, 96), in two stages: by the thiasos and by the whole phratry (`the whole body of phrateres', with [GREEK TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] placed between article and noun).
The most straightforward interpretation of these texts is that all three decrees are decrees of the phratry (as I and III are explicitly said to be), and that the priest and phratriarch are both officers of the phratry;(16) and, since the priest is the priest of the oikos of the Deceleans, and notices are to be published at the place frequented by the Deceleans, that the oikos of the Deceleans is the phratry.
In Thompson's variant on Wade-Gery's view, the extraordinary adjudication ordered by Decree I is only for those who claim membership of the phratry but are not members of the genos of the Demotionidae and are not subject to the law of the Demotionidae; members of the Demotionidae are either exempt from the extraordinary adjudication or subject to a separate adjudication according to the law of the Demotionidae (55-6).
On Wilamowitz' view, that the Demotionidae are the phratry, various problems arise.
The term, requickening, also applies to the power to heal the sorely wounded body and soothe the grief-stricken mind of a sorrowing cousin phratry of tribes.
Phratry 1: Amurdak warri-wudjali, Gaagudju [PHI]-yarrmangiiru (Masc), njing-garrmangiiru (Fem), Garik man-djirra-wudjali, Kunwinjku yarri-burrik
Phratry 2: Amurdak warri-arnkurrk, Gaagudju [PHI]-yarrangaalbu (Masc), njing-garrangaalbu (Fem), Garik man-djirra-wuli, Kunwinjku yarri-karnkurrk
Phratry 3: Amurdak warri-arninj, Gaagudju [PHI]-yarraadjawa (Masc), njing-garraadjawa (Fem), Garik man-balnggidj, Kunwinjku yarri-yarninj
Phratry 4: Amurdak warr-ugarr, Gaagudju [PHI]-yarrabarnaadjinggi, 0-yarrabarnaadju (Masc), njing-garrabarnaadjinggi, njing-garrabarnaadju (Fem), Garik yarri-wurrgan, Kunwinjku yarri-wurrgan
Phratry 5: Amurdak warri-marrangadj, Gaagudju djimburruwoodju (Masc & Fem), Kunwinjku djoned