Dutch term – Parenteel

Parenteel is the Dutch word for an overview of descendants in the male and female lines. A parenteel can be represented in a narrative form or in a chart. It can include people with many different last names, as the descendants of daughters and their spouses are traced too. Some Dutch genealogists publish parentelen online, so a search for the term parenteel combined with a surname or place name of interest may lead you to these publications.

Example: Parenteel of Egbert Mierdinck

The largest parenteel in my own database is that of Egbert Mierdinck, a serf who lived in Winterswijk, Gelderland in the year 1468. My population reconstruction of Winterswijk and the surrounding area contains over 5,000 descendants of his, including over 700 people who emigrated to the United States between 1840 and 1920.

I am a descendant of Egbert through at least fourteen different lines. I believe that all Winterswijkers today are descendants of his (except recent arrivals, of course) and I challenge you all to find me the one Winterswijker who is not!

Meerdink farm

Meerdink farm

About Yvette Hoitink

Yvette Hoitink is a professional genealogist in the Netherlands. She has been doing genealogy for almost 25 years. Her expertise is helping people from across the world find their ancestors in the Netherlands. Read about Yvette's professional genealogy services.


  1. nancy Egbert says:

    I am interested in my last name “Egbert”. The name is also a first name and that fact seems to be confusing in researching. I see that there is also a King Egbert of England. Any advice ?

    • I had only ever heard of the name Egbert as a first name. It seems likely that your last name was originally a patronymic like Egberts, and that the -s got dropped. The only way to find out the origins of your name is to trace the male line until you find the first person who used that name and see if you can find an explanation for why he would have chosen to call himself Egbert.

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