We’re ALL Related to Royalty (If You Go Back Far Enough)

King Edward III

Everyone with European ancestry is descended from Kings and Queens. Dr Adam Rutherford, a leading geneticist, said this is not remarkable at all. If you research your European ancestry far enough, you undoubtedly will find a number of royal ancestors in your family tree.

Speaking at the Chalke Valley History Festival, sponsored by the Daily Mail, he said that ‘literally’ everyone in Europe had a direct lineage to Charlemagne, while there was a ‘significant’ chance most people in Britain are a descendant of Edward III.

You can read the details in an article by Jim Norton in the DailyMail web site at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4641632/Leading-geneticist-says-related-royalty.html.

NOTE: If you have ancestors from Asia, you might be aware of claims that millions of living Asian and a lot of Eastern Europeans as well are descended from Genghis Kahn. In the Muslim world, tens of millions of people are descended from Muhammad.

Given the mathematics involved, none of this should be a surprise. Assuming that every ruler had five children and further assuming that each of the descendants had an average of five children and assuming each of THEM had an average of five children and so on soon results in millions of descendants in the 21st century. Chances are that you are one of the millions.

Of course, many rulers had more than five children while some had fewer than five. The same is true for most of their descendants. Pick an average number that you can believe and then do the math. However you interpret the numbers, the end result is always millions of descendants. The challenge for you is to find the documentation that proves your descent!


Add the mistresses and he numbers will be even higher

Liked by 3 people

Darrell Keith Thomas English June 28, 2017 at 6:48 am

From William the Conquered to QE II and for a good topper The Lord Protector are all in my tree . And when it come to QE II
I have it on bothsides her Father and her Mother with my von Teck tree.

Liked by 1 person

The numbers given – 5 children in each generation going on to breed – are nonsensical. Given that the 5 come from 2 parents, then the population increases by a factor of 2.5 in every generation. That’s the world’s population going up by a factor of 2.5 every generation. A monarch might indeed have 5 children reaching such a state but it’s a different matter once you get out of that social strata.
The truth is that you don’t need such absurd numbers to get a similar effect. If each couple only have 2 children reach child-bearing age themselves, then the population stays static (2 parents giving 2 children) – so clearly this is an under-estimate. But the descendants of the original father double in each generation, even though the population stays constant. In 10 generations, there are 1,000 descendants. In 30 generations (just 750 to 900 years) there will be 1,000 cubed descendants – 1 thousand million descendants.
Of course, this takes no account of pedigree collapse or the degree of mixing that’s needed for everyone (now) to be descended from everyone (then).


They are all descended from the devil.


I’m sorry, I have to disagree. This is a (European) myth. Something a lot of people would like to be a true, but it’s not true. Besides this, there were enough people in Europe to bring the population to its point as it is today.


I agree with Yuval (as I tried to post before). People married within theiir own area, their own class on the whole. Go back a few generations and the same person will appear on several different lines as an ancestor. By the time you have gone back a few centuries the ancestor pool will be fairly small, nothing like the whole population of England, or wherever. The Einsteins married the Moos’s, the Waters married the Blakes, the English Royal family married German nobility. Different classes rarely mixed. It sounds mathematically feasible until you realise how family trees actually work. It just isn’t true.


    Has to disagree about different classes rarely mixed. I have at least 3 books (The Plantagenet Roll of the Blood Royal) listing descendants range from the dukes all the way to a farm laborer, all descendants of Edward III, their residences are not limited to England, spreading over whole Europe.
    And you forgot something else – the DNA matches are turning up in odd places.

    Liked by 1 person

Using this logic, I have 2 parents 4 grandparents 8 great grandparents. 16 GG grandparents
Now this seems to work but 20 generations out about 400 years ago I would need 4 million Gggggggggggggggggggg grandparents and one generation farther I would need EIGHT MILLION! sorry there was a lot of distant and not so distant cousin marriage going on.


My ancestors sure fell far from the tree! Nothing in my research to suggest anything more than tenant farmers in a small Lincolnshire village for the last 500 years. DNA testing suggests a connection further back to a local Roman-era militiaman ca 400 A.D. in Yorkshire. The analysis presented in the article is simplistic at best. I agree with previous commenters that class, location, and pedigree collapse make it unlikely that everyone is related to royalty (at least in a genealogically relevant time-frame).


Look at it from the other end of the telescope, starting with oneself as Gen=0, and moving up the ancestry tree by exponents of 2: 2^1(parents), 2^2 (gparents), 2^3 (g-g parents)… . At the tenth generation one has 2^10 or 1000 direct ancestors, and that is around 1600AD for most of us, and the estimated world population is 500M-600M.
At gen=20, or 2^20, one has 1M ancestors, and the world pop in 1300AD is about 400M. Seems reasonable.
However, at gen=30 about 1100AD, one has *1B* DIRECT ancestors, but the world population is ~300M. So … Charlemagne is ~400AD and … .
BruceF above mentioned ‘pedigree collapse’ and ‘mixing’, which likely explains the differences between each end of the telescope.
If there is a more formal analysis, I would like to see it.


Barbara Curtindale June 29, 2017 at 11:32 am

We’re all related! IF you are a believer, everyone descends from NOAH and his family from the ark. our nationality and coloring is acquired from the regions that those early ancestors settled. As for royalty, one countries royalty married someone from another country, so it’s a mixed bag adding to that all the mistresses and their offspring.
I have a saying on a slightly different angle–” You are never finished with your genealogy until you can get back to ADAM’s grandfather. Now think who that is…..GOD himself. my sermon for the day. LOL


What is less surprising is the fact that sparked the article we’re discussing, that the famous millionaire, Richard Branson is descended from the famous king, Charlemagne. Accepting my thesis that you generally marry within your class, he might well many of the qualities that made Charlemagne a great king :leadership quality, good looks, the self-confidence that goes with both and the sort of mind that likes standing out among his fellows. I’ve been saying for some time that the structure of your brain can be determined by your DNA just as much as the colour of your eyes or your hair. The right environment isneeded for this sort of success, but that too is a function of your inherited DNA tosome extent.


Millions of us are descended from Charlemagne, but probably not all of us are. Anyone who claims that Europeans are all descended from Charlemagne has to prove that there have never been, since Charlemagne first spawned a child, any villages anywhere in Europe that admitted no outsiders to mate with any of the locals. Clearly there is no documentation to prove that; so the claim fails. See some fairly recently-born descendants listed at http://familypedia.wikia.com/wiki/Descendants_of_Charlemagne_(Generation_37) – continued documentation can gradually lengthen that list and most of the others in the series; any more volunteers?


Please note that there are 50 people on that list, not millions. Most of them are some sort of nobility, with just a few outriders whom one hasn’t heard of.


I have no difficulty believing this. For example, if you have one of the approx. 200 genealogically documented “gateway” ancestors that came to the US in the 17th century, you have a tie to English nobility. I have a gateway ancestor, Olive Welby, with a descent from Henry II, and 2 descents from Edward I. All of that ties me back to Charlemagne. I’ve come to realize this is no big deal.


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