GEN-MEDIEVAL-L ArchivesArchiver > GEN-MEDIEVAL > 2002-12 > 1040243317
From: "D. Spencer Hines" <>
Subject: Re: Question On Validity
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 2002 20:28:37 -0000
References: <3DFD0AC3.2EAE39EE@scs.uiuc.edu> <firstname.lastname@example.org> <email@example.com>
It sounds to me as if Mr. Stockdill [marvellous name!] really has an axe to
I suspect he and many of his cohorts can't find any personal lines to
mediaeval ancestors, particularly Royals, and love to ridicule anyone who
can ---- particularly Americans, whom they foolishly think they can
Hell! We find that to be true in certain quarters right here on SGM.
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do
nothing." -- Attributed to Edmund Burke [1729-1797]
Sol Disinfectus Optimus Est. Peccatoris Justificatio Absque Paenitentia,
Legem Destruit Moralem.
"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in
your philosophy." ---- William Shakespeare [1564-1616] The Tragedy of Hamlet,
Prince of Denmark, Act I, Scene V, Line 166-167
All replies to the newsgroup please. Thank you kindly. All original material
contained herein is copyright and property of the author. It may be quoted
only in discussions on this forum and with an attribution to the author,
unless permission is otherwise expressly given, in writing.
D. Spencer Hines
Lux et Veritas et Libertas
Vires et Honor.
"Chris Phillips" <> wrote in message
| Doug McDonald wrote:
| > Roy Stockdill (Editor, Journal of One-Name Studies) writes, in
| > soc.genealogy.britain [sic]:
| > >The simple and unvarnished truth is that very, very few of us can get
| > >our ancestry back much beyond the English Civil War - because that is
| > >the great black hole for many, if not most, UK pedigrees - and while
| > >some will manage to show a line to Tudor times, anything beyond that
| > >is for a small minority indeed, wishful thinking and supposed ancient
| > >pedigrees compiled by fraudulent medieval monks notwithstanding!
| > Mr. Stockdill is very adamant about this, repeating it frequently.
| Unfortunately, he goes further than this. Recently he told the readers of
| soc.genealogy.britain that:
| 5) Before 1538 when Thomas Cromwell introduced parish registers,
| hardly anybody at all had anything recorded, except the very wealthy
| 2% or so who owned virtually all the land in the entire kingdom. They
| are the ones who may appear in manorial courts, land deeds, feet of
| fines, etc. But they were a VERY small minority. The vast majority of
| ordinary people, peasants, even many yeomen who held modest land
| holdings, simply did not figure in any records.
| To find the "Editor of the Journal of One-Name Studies" under the
| misconception that only the "very wealthy" appear in manorial records is
| rather shocking. After all, manorial records are a reasonably well known
| source of information about modern families as well as medieval ones, and it
| is common knowledge that they contain frequent references to people from
| every walk of life.
| Of course, "ordinary people" are named in large numbers in many other
| classes of medieval records, both in and out of print.
| But in fact Roy Stockdill really is a member of the British genealogical
| "establishment". For example, he is a member of the executive committee of
| the Society of Genealogists of London.
| Possibly this says more about the British genealogical establishment than
| anything else, but there certainly seems to be a reflex of hostility towards
| medieval genealogy in certain quarters. Any mention of the subject on
| soc.genealogy.britain produces knee-jerk reactions along the lines of "this
| is ridiculous", "you people must be snobs for tracing aristocratic
| ancestors", "you are deluded", "you have been hoodwinked by get-rich-quick
| merchants" and so on. (Sadly there is more than a little anti-American
| prejudice in this, which if directed at black or jewish people would be
| unhesitatingly identified as racism or anti-semitism.)
| Quite possibly the best thing is simply to ignore such reactions, founded on
| ignorance as they are. On the other hand, perhaps it's worth bearing these
| attitudes in mind. I think it's undeniable that medieval records of
| "ordinary people" are neglected in comparison with those of the
| "manor-holding" classes and higher. In the medium term, I'd like to add some
| more material to my website illustrating the humbler side of medieval
| genealogy. It's easy to think of many types of records that commonly name
| ordinary people. If anyone knows of published work tracing the genealogies
| of manorial tenants and the like - for, say, 3 or more generations, I'd be
| interested to know of them.
| Chris Phillips
|Re: Question On Validity by "D. Spencer Hines" <>|