Grandparents are the parents of a person's father or mother – paternal or maternal. Every sexually-reproducing creature who is not a genetic chimera has a maximum of four genetic grandparents, eight genetic great-grandparents, sixteen genetic great-great-grandparents, 32 genetic great-great-great-grandparents, 64 genetic great-great-great-great-grandparents, etc., although the numbers will be lower in cases of pedigree collapse. In the history of modern humanity, around 30,000 years ago, the number of modern humans who lived to be a grandparent increased exponentially. It is not known for certain what spurred this increase in longevity, but it is generally believed that a key consequence of three generations being alive together was the preservation of information which could otherwise have been lost; an example of this important information might have been where to find water in times of drought.
In writing, Grandfather and Grandmother are most common, but very rare when referring to a grandparent in person. In speech, Grandpa and Grandma are commonly used in the United States, Canada and Australia. In Britain, Ireland, United States, Australia, New Zealand and, particularly prevalent in Newfoundland and Labrador, Nan, Nana, Nanan, Nannan, Nanna, Nada, Nanny, Gran and Granny and other variations are often used for grandmother in both writing and speech.
In many parts of Pakistan and India, maternal grandparents are called Nana and Nani. Similarly, paternal grandparents are called Dada and Dadi.
Numerous other variants exist, such as Gramp, Gramps, Grampa, Grandpap, Granda, Grampy, Granddad, Grandad, Granddaddy, Grandpappy, Pop(s), Pap, Pappy, and Pawpaw for grandfather; Grandmom, Grandmama, Granny, Gran, Nanny, Nan, Mammaw and Grammy for grandmother. Gogo can be used for either, etc.
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