Elemental Genetics are a complicated and potentially messy topic to delve in, and is still one of the many mysterious on Mageia. There is still yet to be a proven fact about how elements are passed on through the generations, but many books have been compiled to provide a consolidated theory.
The widely accepted theory of scientists to the inheritance of elements is that every person, no matter if they're a fire elementalist, water elementalist, or Inanis, has the essence of all five elements stored in their body. When a child reaches around 2-3 years of age, their body and mind develops a natural preference for a certain element, hence gaining their elemental powers. This explains why children are not immediately born with control of wind or earth, but rather, discover their elements a few years later.
However, this elemental preference is often influenced by the parents' elements, which is where people believe elements are "passed down" through a person's genes. A fire mother and a fire father have a larger chance of having a fire child, but that doesn't mean they cannot have a water child. In this case, some of the characteristics of the parents will be passed down to their child's abilities, such as the ability to superheat water. This is also the case with a water and fire bloodline in a wind elementalist. The natural cause of strong winds and the constant battle between water and fire make such a wind elementalist extremely volatile and dangerous. However, they are one of the few elementalists to have immense potential.
Pure elementalists, or those with the element of both their mother and father, have increased control over their element. In the past, this has caused pure elementalists to be revered and worshipped for their bloodline, while mixed elementalists were pretty much taboo. People believed that to intermarry would be tainting their blood, and it wasn't until close to the end of the 2nd Era where mixed elementalists truly boomed.
Despite such theories as the ones mentioned in the above paragraph, the general population simply assume and take elemental domineerance as another genetic quality with tradition, although that is not necessarily true. But because these specific facts are not important for survival for the typical Mageian, schools are largely non-academic, control and basic defense and offense over elements rather than the origin of the powers and citizens seldom find need or desire to teach themselves. Thus leads to a variety of false bloodline conceptions, mockings, confusion and the like.
Even rarer than the rarest elements and combinations is the presence of Inanises. Inanises are common people that are not able to control any element. This is contradictory to the main theory, as it states: All people have the essence of all five elements. However, there are many schools created in Mageia for the education of Inanises, and often times, they are able to realized their elemental preference and become an elementalist.
On the other hand, some Inanises are never able to recognize their abilities, and remain a shunned, unspeakable being in society. Even though they cannot use an element, Inanises are sometimes the hardiest, most reliable people on the continent.