GEN-MEDIEVAL-L ArchivesArchiver > GEN-MEDIEVAL > 2005-11 > 1133114712
Subject: Re: King's Kinsfolk: Richard II's kinsman, Edmund Stafford
Date: 27 Nov 2005 10:05:12 -0800
> Although the papal dispensation is a primary document, nothing else cited is.
> So all we know is that they were related in the fourth degree. For a person
> with no known parentage other than this dispensation's elusive clue, *that*
> is not enough to determine who her parent's were. The Visitation is
> worthless, discussing people several hundred years earlier, in my opinion.
> Will Johnson
It's a bit harsh to reject a Visitation record completely out of hand,
notwithstanding the timeframe involved in its pedigree. Certainly, it
should be treated with suspicion, but one needs to consider whether the
particular Visitation is known to contain other fantasies or
fabrications, or conversely, whether other of its contents can be
confirmed from surviving primary documents. One also needs to ask who
was responsible for compiling it (not all heralds were frauds or
gullible idiots). Some Visitations pedigrees are clearly based on
reliable primary documents, which may not otherwise have survived.
Others reflect family traditions, and as such may be useful as guides
or indications if not strictly accurate. Fallible and questionable:
yes; worthless, not necessarily.