Every Ambo man, woman and child belongs to a clan by birthright bestowed by his or her mother. Should an Ambo claim his father's clan as his own, he is promptly asked whether it is his own clan he is referring to or his father's. The Ambo firmly believe, in spite of all assurances to the contrary, that the writer of this book has a clan membership but that he conceals it in order to avoid obligations of giving assistance to any supposed clansmen. Clans are known by names signifying animals, plants and other material objects such as fire, rain, lead, clay. Clanspeople claim ultimate common matrilineal descent, but the genealogical links are forgotten and genealogical distance is not reckoned. Even the clan ancestress is not remembered. Clan exogamy is the strongest, though negative, mark of clan identification. There is a tendency among the older generation to extend exogamy to 'sister clans' whose clan objects stand in conceptual proximity.