Thursday, April 10, 2014

I Prefer "Your Highness" Actually...

File:Bayeux hawking.jpg
The Fam

Some of you may know that, aside from being a history geek, I'm also a family history freak, except when I'm sick. I was casting about for something to do yesterday (aside from yard work and laundry), so I took up an offer for a 14-day free trial on, where I have done research before.  It usually turns into an obsession pretty quickly.  I ended up doing nothing else yesterday, but spent all day and almost all night (*yawn*) following my father's family tree back and back and back and back and back...there was no end to the links!

I got all the way back like 974 and found that OH YES, WE ARE TOO ROYAL.  See?

HugoKapet kronika.jpg
My 33rd great grandfather, Hugh Capet, or Hugh "The Great", wondering who he has to beat with that stick to get someone to invent pizza.
Actually he appears twice in that branch of the tree (so, yeah).

Also his son, Robert II Capet of France, aka The Pious or The Wise (I like both), my 32nd great grandfather:
Gramps!  I totally see a resemblance here, seriously.

And HIS son-in-law, Baldwin V Count of Flanders, my 31st great grandfather:
Yep.  I see it here, too...

And HIS daughter, Matilda of Flanders, my 30th great grand aunt.  Our family comes down from Matilda's sister Judith, Countess of Bavaria/Duchess of Northumbria, who was married to the brother of the last Anglo-Saxon king, Harold II, but I don't see any statues of her.  Probably because after Judith's brother-in-law William the Conqueror killed Judith's other brother-in-law Harold II at the Battle of Hastings, William was probably all "Oh, no WAY your sister's getting a statue!"  But Matilda got an AWEsome one:

Kidding aside...this is beautiful!

 In case you're not a history geek...Matilda married William the Bastard (man, some mistakes really stick, don't they?), aka William the Conqueror, which has a nicer ring to it, (or "Uncle Bill", as I will be calling him now), which makes him my 30th great grand uncle:

Does this chain mail make me look fat?

And then, all of that whole Norman Conquest/Battle of Hastings stuff happened, and we got the Bayeux Tapestry and a ton of crazy-interesting people to read about.  If you haven't seen the tapestry, you should totally check it out right now.  (Go:)  

So--Where do I sign up?  I'm pretty sure I should at least get a statue.  

Meanwhile, I really need to get some yard work done!!  

PS--Also, if you're should totally check out your family tree.  Who knows what you could find?


  1. I've asked co-workers to refer to me as "Your Highness," but so far it's not working. Maybe I need to dig up some royal ancestors too (not literally, of course).

    History and a snort. A good day.

    1. Try it. You might find Charlemagne or something. See how they like THAT. :D

  2. I'm pretty sure all my links would just trace back to asylums and jails.

    This was really interesting. I've never really cared too much about my roots, but I will admit. I'm slightly curious now.

    1. Michelle, you absolutely should try it. If you have a little time, go to (no, I don't work for them or anything...) try the free trial (be sure to put in for the (whole-world records one, not just the U.S. records), and spend 2 weeks checking it out.

      You start a family tree by putting in your parents' names, then grandparents, and it will lead you along further, if there's any info for anyone further back.

      You will be amazed how much stuff might be there--I've found pictures, immigrant records, ship's manifests, census records that show two great-great GPs who grew up on the same street, and that they were "box makers", Civil War records for a 6-month enlistment (?), WWI draft cards, photos of families and tombstones, and all kinds of interesting stuff. One great-great grandmother's obit show she immigrated from Russia at age 70 to live with my great GM in 1939), then died carrying coal upstairs at their house within months...and another obit for my great-GP who died in a coal mining accident (both did, actually).

      I traced the one line back to like 550 a.d. and then thought, OK--This is far enough...! But I can't wait to start on the other side today.

      I love it! :)

  3. Sadly, there are a lot of holes in my family's history on so I would have to do all of the work and have none of the fun. :(

    1. :( indeed.

      Mine has a lot of lines that die out pretty quick, too. I just got lucky with a lot that go back and just...keep on going...and going. Pretty fascinating. We keep joking that someone could have just filled that stuff in randomly, but I like to think it's all accurate.

  4. Shut. Up. That's so exciting! I never got that far back when I did my family background. Now I feel cheated. There was an exciting story involving Irish people....and some battle....and some guy who got kicked out of Ireland or something and he was our relative. Some famous general I think (?) I should really get my memory checked. Gingko biloba or something. And yes, you totally need a statue!

    1. You should go back further--you might be surprised what you find. I started in like 2002, then took a break for 10 years, and I'm amazed how much more is available now. :D

      Will post soon about what I found in my husband's geneology; for an English history freak like made me pretty envious!

    2. My sister has been working on tracing our ancestry. My mom always said she was descended from Daniel Boone, but one time I visited his birthplace (because I was driving by on a trip) and they had a whole book of lists of his descendents and none of our family names were in there.
      So come to find out that my mom's parents were 6th cousins -- each one having a 5Xgreat-grandmother who were Daniel Boone's sisters.
      When people would ask my ancestry I would say that my mom's ethnicity is "pioneer" and it is true! They kept going south and west until they ended up in West Texas.

    3. Very cool. We found just about every famous name in English Henry II-era history in Shane's family tree, three Barons who signed the Magna Carta, the Capetian dynasty, and, more recently, a big Kentucky slave-owning plantation owner who was a captain in the Revolution, as well as Massachusetts' first governor! Someone owes us some backrent for sure.

  5. You're gonna have to change the name of your blog to something like "The saga eternal of the Countess of Cake". Or something.
    Dude, you totally have to drop these names loudly next time you're sitting next to a bunch of name dropping narcissists as told in your April 14th entry.

    1. I know right?!

      I could be all, SO, AUNT PLANTAGENET CALLED and she's SUPER annoyed because the whole NEVILLE AND PERCY SIDE OF THE FAMILY are being rude and insisting on bringing AUNT COUNTESS OF NORFOLK'S deviled eggs for the family gathering on Easter, just to spite GREAT-GREAT GRANDMA HABSBURG. And my GREAT UNCLE ON THE CAPETIAN DYNASTY SIDE OF OUR FAMILY is just REFUSING to have the picnic at KENDALL CASTLE so we're thinking of checking with my OTHER UNCLE THE DUKE OF AUSTRIA to see if we can use THAT CASTLE, but he's not getting along with our CHARLEMAGNE RELATIVES... It's all just such a NUISance...!

      I love it.

      --Countess of Cake