Were "nephews" sometimes really cousins? #general


erikagottfried53@...
 

I have a number of photo postcards, written to my husband's grandfather, Max Rubin, an immigrant from Ostrowitz, Poland.  The postcards are written by different individuals (n both Yiddish and English) each of whom refers to himself as "your nephew."  The problem is that Max didn't have as many nephews as there are senders.  I'm trying to figure out what's going on here.

I know it's common in many families for older relatives to be referred to honorifically as "aunt" and "uncle" when they're not literally the aunt or uncle of the person addressing them.  Were there similar instances in which there were honorific "nephews" who were really younger cousins?

Erika Gottfried,  Teaneck, NJ     <erikagottfried53@...>

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