Monday, February 28, 2011

My Relationship To Prince William

Posted by Craig on 2/28/2011 2 comments
Today I saw "The King's Speech," just a few hours before it won the big Oscar tonight for Best Picture.

It was fantastic, and as a genealogy enthusiast, it immediately sent me to Wikipedia when I walked out of the movie theatre to figure out the relationships of the characters to Queen Elizabeth II and other members of the Royal Family.

When I found out the film focused on Queen Elizabeth II's parents, George VI and Elizabeth I, my interest peaked. These, of course, are the great-grandparents of Prince William. And what a speech his great-grandfather gave. Such a moving sequence in the film.

It also reminded me of my own connection to royalty -- in November 2008 (a decade after starting to research my family history), I found the definitive link tracing my ancestry back to Charlemagne.

Of course, the modern-day Royal Family in England descends of Charlemagne, too, and while I had never officially made the link to them, tonight I spent time filling their line into my tree, and I now have a definitive blood link.

Prince William, engaged to be married to Kate Middleton in April, is my 32nd cousin, once removed.

It's an *insane* relationship, when you think about it -- hugely distant. First cousins share grandparents, second cousins share great-grandparents, third cousins share great-great-grandparents, and so on. We are 32nd cousins! That means we share 31-greats-grandparents.

Our common ancestors include Charlemagne, but our most direct link is to Baldwin of Flanders V and Adelheid, Princess of France, who married in Paris in 1028. Their son Baldwin of Flanders is my ancestor, and their daughter Matilda who married some guy named William the Conqueror (William I, King of England), is Prince William's ancestor.

And there you have it!

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