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A generation is "all of the people born and living at about the same time, regarded collectively." It can also be described as, "the average period, generally considered to be about thirty years, during which children are born and grow up, become adults, and begin to have children of their own." In kinship terminology, it is a structural term designating the parent-child relationship. It is also known as biogenesis, reproduction, or procreation in the biological sciences.


As is the generation of leaves, so is that of humanity. ~ Homer
  • Οἵη περ φύλλων γενεὴ τοίη δὲ καὶ ἀνδρῶν.
    φύλλα τὰ μέν τ' ἄνεμος χαμάδις χέει, ἄλλα δέ θ' ὕλη
    τηλεθόωσα φύει, ἔαρος δ' ἐπιγίγνεται ὥρη·
    ὣς ἀνδρῶν γενεὴ ἣ μὲν φύει ἣ δ' ἀπολήγει.
    • As is the generation of leaves, so is that of humanity.
      The wind scatters the leaves on the ground, but the live timber
      Burgeons with leaves again in the season of spring returning.
      So one generation of men will grow while another dies.
    • Homer, Iliad (c. 750 BC), Book VI. 146–149 (tr. R. Lattimore); Glaucus to Diomed.
  • Our ideals, laws and customs should be based on the proposition that each generation, in turn, becomes the custodian rather than the absolute owner of our resources and each generation has the obligation to pass this inheritance on to the future.
  • There is a mysterious cycle in human events. To some generations much is given. Of other generations much is expected. This generation of Americans has a rendezvous with destiny.
    • Franklin D. Roosevelt, speech accepting renomination for the presidency, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 27, 1936. The Public Papers and Addresses of Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1936, p. 235 (1938).

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