Open main menu

Gramps β

How to find the relationship between people

One of the Frequently Asked Questions of new users of Gramps is whether there is a simple way to discover the relationship and degree of separation between two Persons?

But the answer depends on which relationship is of interest. Some users are interested in only showing direct ancestor or descendant genetic relationships. Other users are also interested in collateral (cousins!) lines or immediate in-laws. And yet other users are interested in how the most indirect connections influence a community.

So Gramps offers a continually expanding variety of tools, reports and methods to determine how people are connected within a Tree's database.

As with many operations in Gramps, there are many ways to explore relationships. Try them all to find the one that best suits your workflow.

If you find a Relationship identifying feature not mentioned below, please add it to the See Also section.


Fig. .1 Graphs - Relationship Chart - Ancestors
Fig. .2 Graphs - Relationship Chart - Ancestors & Descendants
Fig. .3 Graphs - Relationship Graph

It can be done visually using a full family tree. (i.e. one that shows all the people rather than just descendant and ancestors) But it grows difficult when the size of the tree is very large.

A visualization of the Tree may include some basic relationship data. There are a variety of charts available. See "How to make a relationship chart."

The objective is to find something like:

"Yes, she's your ninth cousin seven times removed"

"He's your step-great-great-grandmother's niece-by-marriage's grandson"


This article's content is incomplete or a placeholder stub.
Please update or expand this section.

But there are also a number of ways to let Gramps determine the relationship between two Persons in the Tree.

Relationship Calculator

Fig. .4 "Relationship to '...' " - dialog - showing results for "Relationship Calculator" Tool

You can make them the Active Person and then use the Relationship calculator via the Tools ➡ Utilities ➡ Relationship Calculator... menu.

This tool is interesting because it lists the relationship in conversational terms. That is, it says something like "Smith, John is the great grand uncle of Weaver, Susan. Their common ancestors are Smith, Mark and Carpenter, Mary." 

However, the Relationship Calculator can also be overwhelming because it lumps all the Relatives of the Active Person into a large alphabetical list. So, you'll have to find a Person by name instead moving through the relationships via connections in the Tree. If the Tree is too big to keep a Pedigree snapshot in your head, you're in for some navigation awkwardness pain.

You'll have to cross-reference the people you find in the Views while navigating the Tree in the List of the Relationship Calculator.

As related to the Home Person

You might find it is more natural to assume your conversational subject will revolve around one person. You can put Gramps on the same conversational footing.

Normally, you will have set yourself as the Home Person. That made Gramps describe records in terms of their relationship to you.

But while having a conversation with someone, you will want to temporarily swap Gramps to reporting from their perspective instead. (I have a bookmark for myself to make it easier to 'find myself' and reset these temporary Home Person designations back to normal.)

Changing the perspective is typically done by designating that Person as the Home Person and navigating the Active Person selection to the others as they pop up in discussion.  

Sometimes, the subject of the conversation will be an ancestor which you're mutually researching. So that ancestor would become the temporary Home Person.

Once you have set the Home Person, several options can show the Active Person's relationship to the Home Person:


Several of the reports have an option to show the relationship to the home person -- or not.

The Complete Individual Report is generated from the Reports ➡ Text Reports ➡ Complete Individual Report... menu.

Fig. .5 Complete Individual Report - Text Reports - Include (2) - tab default options

Selecting the ☑Include relationships to center person checkbox in the Include (2) tab will include relationships to the filter person (Note: Because this option makes creating reports so much slower, it is deselected by default.)

Fig. .6 Kinship Report - Text Reports - example output overview

The Kinship report provides the kinship of selected person according to level search (ancestor, descendant generations) set by user.

You can choose the Kinship Report with Reports ➡ Text Reports ➡ Kinship Report...

The Status Bar:

ln the display tab of the Preferences, you can change the Status bar from the default of displaying the 'Active person's name and ID' to 'Relationship to home person'.

Quick Views:

Open the Relation to Home Person quick view from the Edit Person dialog.


This article's content is incomplete or a placeholder stub.
Please update or expand this section.

(This Quick View needs exploration & documenting. The wiki section is only a 'stub')

Explore a Quick View interactively

Quick Views are normally a static analysis snapshot invoked from a pop-up menu when editing a single record.

You can use the Quick Views Gramplet to explore the Relation to Home Person Quick View interactively. This can accelerate learning its uses.

After adding the Quick View Gramplet to the Person view sidebar, click the Configure... button, go to the Quick View tab, select Person from the View Type menu and Relation to Home Person from the Quick Views menu.

As you change the Active Person, the Gramplet will update to a new Quick View snapshot. Quick Views are written to run as snapshots because they put a heavy load on your computer. Do NOT use this shell Gramplet except briefly as a learning tool.


Deep Connections Gramplet - example results

The Deep Connections Gramplet is a 3rd party addon that shows indirect relationships but can be confusing for direct cousins... because the listing stops at siblings. It will not list the mutual ancestor(s). Most people want to know the shared ancestor and if you're descended from the same marriage.


See also:

  • The Not Related report (reports Persons not directly or indirectly connected to the Tree branch of the Active Person)
  • Genealogical Numbering Systems supported in Gramps
  • The Relationship Calculator
  • The Relationship to home person Display Preferences option for the Status bar
  • Relation to Home Person quick view.
  • The Deep Connections gramplet: If this third party addon is installed, it will list the intervening generations through the sibling offspring of a common ancestor. (But it does not list the common ancestor or whether both persons are connected through the same spouse.) The Gramplet also details the indirect relationships.
  • Network Chart Web report: If this third party addon is installed, and you use the Highlight preferences tab show only path(s) set to "Direct" option to show a direct path between the two individuals selected and display only that path if available.
  • Relationship path filters
  • Kinship report
Finding relationship between two people
Relationship to Root...
Multi-relationships in Relationship Calculator?
Relationship calculator: analysis, and a fix