Image credit: Unsplash

High consanguinity promotes intergenerational wealth concentration in socioeconomically privileged Krummhörn families of the 18th and 19th centuries

Image credit: Unsplash

High consanguinity promotes intergenerational wealth concentration in socioeconomically privileged Krummhörn families of the 18th and 19th centuries

Abstract

Previous research has demonstrated that consanguineous marriage is a vector for socioeconomic inheritance and for the maintenance of family structure and property. On the basis of reconstituted families from the Krummhörn, Ostfriesland in the 18th and 19th centuries, we examine statistical correlations between ascertained inbreeding coefficients (F) based on family trees and socioeconomic status as well as the intergenerational transmission of landholdings. Semiparametric copula/bivariate regression models with non-random sample selection were applied to estimate F and the proportion of medium (0.0625 > F ≥ 0.0156) or high consanguineous unions (F ≥ 0.0625), respectively. Our estimates for F as well as for the proportion of medium (0.0625 > F ≥ 0.0156) or high consanguineous unions (F ≥ 0.0625) are significantly higher among socioeconomically privileged large farmer families than among the landless portion of the population. At the same time, our analyses show that a high level of consanguinity is associated with an increased intergenerational transmission of landholdings through the patriline (but not the matriline). We discuss the reproductive consequences of consanguinity among large farmers in connection with local resource competition, intensive kinship, and potential in-law conflicts.

Publication
In Evolution and Human Behavior.
Date