A secundogeniture (from Latin: secundus "following, second," and genitus "born") was a dependent territory given to a younger son of a princely house and his descendants, creating a cadet branch. This was a special form of inheritance in which the second and younger son received more possessions and prestige than the apanage which was usual in principalities practising primogeniture. It avoided the generational division of the estate to the extent that occurred under gavelkind, and at the same time gave younger branches a stake in the stability of the house.

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