AP: Genealogists discover royal roots for all---
Even without a documented connection to a notable forebear, experts say the odds are virtually 100 percent that every person on Earth is descended from one royal personage or another.What a list! George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Quincy Adams, Jane Austen, Lord Byron, Alfred Lord Tennyson, Robert E. Lee!
"Millions of people have provable descents from medieval monarchs," said Mark Humphrys, a genealogy enthusiast and professor of computer science at Dublin City University in Ireland. "The number of people with unprovable descents must be massive."
By the same token, for every king in a person's family tree there are thousands and thousands of nobodies whose births, deaths and lives went completely unrecorded by history. We'll never know about them, because until recently vital records were a rarity for all but the noble classes.
It works the other way, too. Anybody who had children more than a few hundred years ago is likely to have millions of descendants today, and quite a few famous ones.
Take King Edward III, who ruled England during the 14th century and had nine children who survived to adulthood. Among his documented descendants are presidents (George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Quincy Adams, Zachary Taylor, both Roosevelts), authors (Jane Austen, Lord Byron, Alfred Lord Tennyson, Elizabeth Barrett Browning), generals (Robert E. Lee), scientists (Charles Darwin) and actors (Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn, Brooke Shields). Some experts estimate that 80 percent of England's present population descends from Edward III.
I wonder who I am related to? My ancestry is Irish (I think some went from England to Ireland), French, and German. I love the Irish. I wish I was English, Welsh, and Scottish. I am PROUD to be an AMERICAN. I wouldn't want to have been born anywhere else.
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