Tag Archives: Understanding Your Family Tree

What is the Difference between Second Cousins and Cousins Once Removed?

Check out these handy charts which explains the difference between “second cousins” and “cousins once removed.” I’ve always struggled with understanding if my relative William French of Calgary is actually my cousin or my uncle or my nemesis. Just kidding on the nemesis bit:-) You see, William French’s mom and my grandma are sisters. So, what is our relationship? William French and I are actually first cousins once removed….

Another useful chart:




Remembering my father’s cousin’s kids from BC and Alberta is kind of tricky. So by referring to these handy diagrams, I can see that they are second cousins. And their kids are second cousins once removed. And their kids’ kids will be twice removed. Understand?! I’ll probably never meet THOSE kids though.

Another useful chart: