Pa*ter"ni*ty (?), n. [L. paternitas: cf. F. paternit'e. See Paternal.]
The relation of a father to his child; fathership; fatherhood; family headship; as, the divine paternity.
The world, while it had scarcity of people, underwent no other dominion than paternity and eldership.
Sir W. Raleigh.
Derivation or descent from a father; male parentage; as, the paternity of a child.
The paternity of these novels was . . . disputed.
Sir W. Scott.
© Webster 1913.