• (British, America) IPA: /ˈfɪl.i.əl/, /ˈfɪl.jəl/
  • (America, also) IPA: /ˈəl/


  1. (not comparable) Pertaining to or befitting a son or daughter.
    • 1794, Charlotte Smith, The Banished Man, Volume 2, Chapter 20,
      The filial duty Ellesmere had paid to a father, who had no other claim to it than that he was his father, was now consoling to him [D'Alonville]; [...]
    Antonyms: unfilial
    hypo en
    Coordinate terms: maternal#English|maternal, parental#English|parental, paternal#English|paternal
  2. (comparable) Respectful of the duties and attitudes of a son or daughter toward their parents.
    • 1885, Confucius, "The actions and Attitude of Filiality", translated by James Legge,
      If the admonition [to the parent] does not take effect, the son will be more reverential and more filial; [...]
  3. (genetics) Of a generation or generations descending from a specific previous one.
    • 1916, William E. Castle & Gregor Mendel, Genetics & Eugenics ↗, p. 101.
      This, following Bateson, we may call the parental generation or P generation. Subsequent generations are called filial generations (abbreviated F) and their numerical order is indicated by a subscript, as first filial (F1), second filial (F2), etc.
    Coordinate term: parental#English|parental
Related terms Translations
  • French: filial
  • German: söhnlich (sonly), töchterlich (daughterly)
  • Portuguese: filial
  • Russian: сыно́вий
  • Spanish: filial

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