|Edward I Throne - a re-creation in the|
Tower of London
It goes back to my youth, of course. I was introduced to the medieval English royal dynasty - the Plantagenets, for want of a better surname - through the 4-book series by Canadian author Thomas B. Costain, of which my favorite was The Three Edwards (more on that in another post), and through a series of historical fiction novels by Jean Plaidy, of which my favorites were Hammer of the Scots and The Follies of the King (more on those in yet another post). Because Edward I had four children (Joan of Acre, Elizabeth of Rhuddlan, Thomas of Brotherton, Edmund of Woodstock) who married and remained in England, and whose descendants interacted frequently with the Plantagenet royal line, he seemed the best place to start.
As I became an adult and started to research the genealogy of the Plantagenet and other English medieval dynasties in detail, I realized that original sources for the reigns of Edward I through Richard III were particularly strong, often transcribed in modern (or modern-enough) English, and readily available at large libraries. The original sources for pre-1300 England, and for continental royal lines were almost always in languages for which I had no fluency: Latin, Anglo-Norman French, etc. It made those lines harder to wade through. So Edward I seemed a great place to begin, falling as it did close enough to 1300, the beginning of the "calamitous fourteenth century," as historian Barbara Tuchman phrased it. Edward I became a useful cut-off point in my research. If a person/family wasn't descended from him, I happily skipped over them.
|Edward I (1239-1307)|
"Some more figures it would be interesting to estimate:
- Number of estimated descendants of Edward I - Roderick W. Stuart claims tens of millions of descendants in America alone. According to Brian Tompsett, it has been said that "All English descend from Edward I and all Scots from Malcolm III."
- Number of provable step by step descendants of Edward I."
What I hope to have happen with Royal Descent is a comprehensive website of the provable decendants of Edward I, at least up until the year 1500. An incredibly over-ambitious undertaking, but, hey, I gotta start somewhere!