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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
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    Default A strain in the family.

    I think I have read this sentence somewhere:

    "There runs a strain of red-hairedness in our family."

    ...or something to that effect.

    I want to gain some sense of how this word (strain) in this meaning of it, can be used. Will these sentences be alright:

    "We have a strain in our DNA that breaks out in red hair on a head or two in each generation." (Experimenting much there, so you might have some comments...)

    "There's a strain in our lineage that, every other generation, gives someone red hair."


    If you could make up a few more ways to use this word, I'd be thankful. Simultaneously, I might pick up some more words for "genetic closeness", like family and lineage. Is line ok? Like "a strain in our line/a strain in the line" What about kin? I know this is a messy question, but it's all loose ends, and a vague idea of something that can be great. Bear with me.

    Sincerely,
    Deen

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
    • Member Info
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    Default Re: A strain in the family.

    I wouldn't use 'strain' with the people or the DNA, but with the red hair, or whatever. Just as you have strains of flu, but you wouldn't use the word with the person with the illness.

    You can use strain in many ways:

    There a dangerous strain of avian flu in SE Asia.
    There's a strain of thinking that believes that....

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