Yes, nothing was meant to disparage Dave's or Jamie's work.
I was just expressing frustration with the reality that many of
my brick walls are brick walls to everyone else looking in the
same directions, when I was hoping for more professional
folks to have knocked through them and shed light on new
I'd have also thought the scientific method would have pounded
the latest editions of the peerage books into decent shape by
now. (By analogy, the wikipedia pages, with few exceptions,
seem much better than they used to.) Sure, that sort of spinning
probably started as depicted in "A Knight's Tale" with folks trying
to pump up their heritage to appear descended from religious
leaders and others believed to have been great. (I know for a
fact that folks who wrote and directed it were certainly aware
and poking a bit of fun at it :B-) But I would have thought quite
a bit of the totally bogus material had been cross-checked,
challenged, compared with DNA studies of reputed
descendants, etc., and corrected by now... especially
now that we're not encumbered with looking only at tiny
portions of Y or mtDNA to trace only fathers' fathers'...
and mothers' mothers'..., but it has become practical to
examine complete sequences of all of the chromosomes
and crunch the stats to more precisely trace back.
Most of the elation I've seen in people who find out that
one of their ancestors was a part of the "nobility" is that
it would seem to make their genealogy work easier than
unending rocky trails of peasant/tenant farmers and
butchers and spinners and weavers and such who leave
few written traces. Then again, there' a silly pleasure in
the mythological "genealogies" that reach back to
Adam Ha Rishon and Chava (known to more as Adam and Eve),
or to Odin or Genghis Khan or Seiwa or Nefertiti or
Kung Fu Tzu or Huang-Ti...
My lines' specialty seems to have been planting themselves
firmly on opposite sides in the great struggles and wars of
each age... and forming complex cousinage networks
across the lines of battle.
"Finally, near Troyes [along the Seine in northeast-central France], a coalition of Ostrogoths and Franks turned back Attila and his armies. The Huns left more than dead Europeans in their wake." --- Steve Olson 2002_Mapping Human History: Genes, Race, and Our Common Origins_ pg185
"At the individual level, people have to decide how much they want to know about their own ancestry." --- Steve Olson 2002_Mapping Human History: Genes, Race, and Our Common Origins_ pg117
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