A family of languages (a language family) is a group of languages that developed from a common historical ancestor.
Some linguists have tried to establish separate terms for families with greater and shallower time-depth, or of different subdivisions within a family. Here are some of them:
Origin of the term
This term was apparently adopted by linguists from biology, where a group of similar plants had been called family since the mid-18th century, if not earlier. The term is deeply entrenched in linguistics since at least the mid-19th century.