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Fraternal vs. Paternal: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Updated on December 25, 2023
Fraternal pertains to brothers or brotherhood, while Paternal relates to fathers or fatherhood.
Fraternal vs. Paternal

Key Differences

Fraternal is a term that primarily refers to something related to brothers or a brotherly bond. It signifies a relationship or connection that is brother-like, whether in a familial or figurative sense. Paternal, in contrast, is specifically related to fathers. It denotes a relationship, characteristics, or qualities associated with a father, often implying guidance, protection, or authority.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 20, 2023
In the context of twins, fraternal describes twins who are born from two separate eggs and are genetically distinct, much like regular siblings. They may not necessarily resemble each other closely. On the other hand, paternal has no direct relevance to the concept of twins but refers to traits or aspects inherited from the father, emphasizing the genetic and emotional connection to the paternal side of the family.
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Fraternal organizations or societies are groups formed with a sense of brotherhood, camaraderie, and mutual support, often not limited to actual familial relationships. In contrast, paternal doesn't usually describe groups or organizations but rather individual roles, attitudes, or hereditary traits passed down from fathers.
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Nov 20, 2023
The fraternal bond is celebrated in various cultures as a symbol of loyalty, support, and equality among brothers or peers. Paternal roles, conversely, are traditionally associated with fatherly duties, responsibilities, and the paternal lineage in a family.
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In a metaphorical sense, fraternal can describe actions or feelings that are brotherly or supportive in a non-literal way, transcending blood relationships. Paternal, metaphorically, can refer to actions or attitudes that are fatherly or protective, even outside of actual paternal relationships.
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Comparison Chart

Primary Relation

Pertains to brothers or brotherhood.
Relates to fathers or fatherhood.
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Context in Twins

Describes genetically distinct twins.
Not directly applicable to twins.
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Organizational Use

Refers to brotherly groups or societies.
Not typically used for groups or organizations.
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Cultural Symbolism

Symbolizes brotherly loyalty and support.
Represents fatherly duties and lineage.
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Metaphorical Usage

Describes brotherly actions or feelings.
Pertains to fatherly attitudes or guidance.
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Fraternal and Paternal Definitions

Fraternal

Pertaining to a group formed by brothers or men with common interests.
He joined a fraternal organization to find community and support.
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Paternal

Exhibiting a father's qualities or authority.
His paternal guidance was crucial in shaping their careers.
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Fraternal

Of or like a brother or brothers.
The fraternal affection between the team members was evident.
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Paternal

Relating to or inherited from one's father.
His paternal heritage influenced his interest in carpentry.
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Fraternal

Describing twins that are born from two separate eggs.
My siblings are fraternal twins and have quite different personalities.
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Paternal

Pertaining to paternal lineage or ancestry.
She researched her paternal family tree for a school project.
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Fraternal

Brotherly in nature or spirit.
His fraternal care for his younger teammates was admirable.
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Paternal

Of or appropriate to a father.
His paternal instincts kicked in when he first held his daughter.
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Fraternal

Of or relating to brothers
A close fraternal tie.
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Paternal

Relating to or characteristic of a father.
He inherited his paternal grandfather's watch.
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Fraternal

Showing comradeship; brotherly.
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Paternal

Relating to or characteristic of a father or fatherhood; fatherly.
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Fraternal

Of or constituting a fraternity
A fraternal association.
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Paternal

Received or inherited from a father
A paternal trait.
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Fraternal

Roman Catholic Church Of or constituting a mendicant order such as the Dominicans or Franciscans.
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Paternal

Related through one's father
My paternal aunt.
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Fraternal

(Biology) Of, relating to, or being a twin developed from two separately fertilized ova; dizygotic.
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Paternal

Of or pertaining to one's father, his genes, his relatives, or his side of a family.
Paternal grandfather
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Fraternal

Of or pertaining to a brother or brothers.
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Paternal

Fatherly; behaving as or characteristic of a father.
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Fraternal

Of or pertaining to a fraternity.
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Paternal

Received or inherited from one's father.
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Fraternal

Platonic or friendly.
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Paternal

Acting as a father.
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Fraternal

(genetics) Of twins or embryos, produced from two different eggs and sperm, and genetically distinct.
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Paternal

Of or pertaining to a father; fatherly; showing the disposition of a father; guiding or instructing as a father; as, paternal care.
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Fraternal

A society formed to provide mutual aid, such as insurance.
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Paternal

Received or derived from a father; hereditary; as, a paternal estate.
Their small paternal field of corn.
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Fraternal

A fraternal twin.
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Paternal

Belonging to or inherited from one's father;
Spent his childhood on the paternal farm
Paternal traits
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Fraternal

Of, pertaining to, or involving, brethren; becoming to brothers; brotherly; as, fraternal affection; a fraternal embrace.
An abhorred, a cursed, a fraternal war.
Fraternal love and friendship.
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Paternal

Characteristic of a father
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Fraternal

Of or relating to a fraternity or society of usually men;
A fraternal order
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Paternal

Relating to or characteristic of or befitting a parent;
Parental guidance
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Fraternal

(of twins) derived from two separate fertilized ova;
Fraternal twins are biovular
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Paternal

Related on the father's side;
A paternal aunt
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Fraternal

Like or characteristic of or befitting a brother;
Brotherly feelings
Close fraternal ties
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Fraternal

Relating to or characteristic of brothers.
They shared a fraternal bond, despite not being blood-related.
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Repeatedly Asked Queries

What are fraternal twins?

Fraternal twins are siblings born at the same time but from separate eggs.
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What does fraternal mean?

Fraternal refers to something related to brothers or brotherhood.
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What does paternal instinct mean?

It refers to the natural tendency to protect and care for one's children.
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Are fraternal societies gender-specific?

Traditionally, yes, but many fraternal societies now include all genders.
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Can women be part of fraternal organizations?

Many modern fraternal organizations include women.
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Can fraternal be used outside of family context?

Yes, fraternal is often used to describe brotherly bonds in non-familial contexts.
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Is paternal only related to biological fathers?

Paternal primarily relates to biological fathers but can also describe father-like figures.
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Can organizations be fraternal?

Yes, organizations based on brotherhood or mutual interests are called fraternal.
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What is the definition of paternal?

Paternal pertains to fathers or fatherhood.
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Does paternal refer to genetic inheritance?

Yes, paternal often refers to traits or qualities inherited from the father's side.
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Does paternal authority imply strictness?

Not necessarily; it can also imply guidance and support.
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Can fraternal twins look identical?

They can look similar but are not genetically identical like monozygotic twins.
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Can paternal be used metaphorically?

Yes, it can describe someone acting in a fatherly or protective manner.
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Do fraternal organizations have rituals?

Many fraternal organizations have specific rituals and traditions.
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Can paternal be used in legal terms?

Yes, in legal terms, paternal refers to matters related to the father's side.
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Is fraternal love the same as brotherly love?

Yes, fraternal love is often synonymous with brotherly love.
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What role does paternal care play in child development?

Paternal care is crucial in providing stability and guidance.
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Are fraternal relationships always positive?

Like any relationship, fraternal ones can vary in dynamics.
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How does paternal involvement impact families?

Active paternal involvement often leads to positive outcomes in family dynamics.
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How is paternal lineage traced?

Paternal lineage is traced through the father's family line.
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Shumaila Saeed
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Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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