Who Do You Assume You Are? viewers have been surprised to find comic Josh Widdicombe is a distant descendant of Henry VIII – however the reality is historic ties to royalty are extra frequent than one may suppose.
The comic, 38, found he’s an ancestor of the Tudor royal, famed for his six wives, in final evening’s episode of the BBC family tree present, and was left speechless at each twist and switch.
‘To say it is exceeded my expectations is the understatement of a lifetime,’ he mentioned. ‘I used to be simply anticipating a few farmers. It is correct blue blood, is not it?’
The disbelief on Josh’s face as every new revelation was revealed delighted viewers, who hailed it the ‘greatest ever’ episode of the long-running present. It has echoes of Danny Dyer’s widespread episode through which he additionally found a hyperlink to royalty.
‘#WhoDoYouThinkYouAre: spectacular begin to new collection with @joshwiddicombe ; no spoilers however would like to have been in workplace when researchers came upon what they’ve,’ tweeted one viewer.
One other posted: ‘The @joshwiddicombe #WhoDoYouThinkYouAre is among the greatest ones there’s ever been. Jaw dropping.’
However in actuality research have discovered that for those who’re European – and even descended from Europeans – it is almost certainly you are one way or the other associated to royalty, that means tens of millions of individuals might dig out their very own connections to the kings and queens of outdated.
Surprised: Who Do You Assume You Are? viewers have been amazed to find comic Josh Widdicombe is a distant descendant of Henry VIII. Pictured, the comic learns of his connection to the Boleyn household. The truth is nearly everybody is said to royalty
Distant: Josh’s connection to Henry VIII (left) is thru 13x great-grandmother Girl Catherine Knollys. There may be proof to recommend Girl Catherine is the lovechild of Henry’s relationship with Mary Boleyn (proper), the sister of his second spouse, Anne
Astonishing: The disbelief on Josh’s face as every new revelation was revealed delighted viewers, who hailed it the ‘greatest ever’ episode of the long-running present. It has echoes of Danny Dyer’s widespread episode through which he additionally found a hyperlink to royalty
Josh’s journey began with a household connection to the highly effective banking dynasty the Barings, though he realized his 5x great-grandfather, Charles, was reduce out of the enterprise.
By means of this relative, Josh found his 10x great-grandfather was Henry Wealthy (1590-1649), the primary Earl of Holland and a trusted adviser to King Charles I.
Henry was a member of the highly effective Privy Council, in addition to ‘the groom of the stool’, whose duty it was to accompany the royal to the bathroom.
Professor Tracy Borman defined the position was one of the vital wanted within the court docket, saying: ‘In these days it is all about getting forward in addition to attending to be with the king… It carries monumental affect.’
His life got here to an finish when he was ultimately executed for prime treason ordered by parliamentarian Oliver Cromwell after the English Civil Battle.
Widdicombe is then led to St Nicholas Church, exterior Henley-on-Thames, in Oxfordshire, the place he learns Wealthy was the great-grandson of Girl Catherine Knollys and her husband, Sir Francis Knollys, Treasurer of the Family to Queen Elizabeth I.
Girl Catherine was Chief Girl of the Bedchamber to Elizabeth I and, in a testomony to their bond, the monarch paid for her funeral. Girl Catherine was buried in Westminster Abbey.
Josh’s connection to the notorious royal is thru 13x great-grandmother Girl Catherine Knollys – as there’s proof to recommend she is the lovechild of Henry’s relationship with Anne Boleyn’s sister Mary
Subsequent recreation Josh’s 12x great-grandmother, Lettice Knollys, Francis and Catherine’s daughter, a Tudor lady-in-waiting who appeared like a youthful, prettier Elizabeth I.
Josh studied the image however did not guess the importance. Lettice turned out to be the monarch’s cousin. A lot to the Virgin Queen’s chagrin, she even married Robert Dudley, the Earl of Leicester — as soon as hotly tipped to marry Queen Elizabeth himself.
When that was defined, Josh was reeling: ‘My 12 occasions great-grandmother was in a love triangle with Elizabeth I?’
On visiting Girl Catherine’s grave in Westminster Abbey, Josh realized she was the daughter of Mary Boleyn, sister of Henry VIII’s second spouse Anne. Certainly some historians imagine Girl Catherine was the product of Mary’s affair with the king.
‘So Catherine was the cousin of Queen Elizabeth I,’ he mentioned, laughing. The revelation left Josh speechless.
Josh realized his 10x great-grandfather was Henry Wealthy (1590-1649), the primary Earl of Holland and a trusted adviser to King Charles I. Pictured, Wealthy’s title on a listing of the Privy Council
Wealthy, pictured, was additionally ‘the groom of the stool’, whose duty it was to accompany the royal to the bathroom
Widdicombe was taken to St Nicholas Church, exterior Henley-on-Thames, in Oxfordshire, the place he learns Wealthy was the great-grandson of Girl Catherine Knollys and her husband, Sir Francis Knollys, Treasurer of the Family to Queen Elizabeth I (pictured, their tomb)
Girl Catherine, who lived from 1524-1569, is believed to be portrayed on this 1562 portrait by Steven van der Meulen. There may be suggestion she was the illegitimate daughter of Henry VIII
On a go to to Hever Citadel — household seat of the Boleyns — Widdicombe was left open-mouthed as he realized his line went again to the 13th century’s King Philippe of France . . . his 24 occasions great-grandfather. ‘Correct blue blood,’ whistled Josh.
Research have revealed how tens of millions are associated to royalty. In 1999, Joseph Chang – a Yale statistician – demonstrated that for those who look again at the very least 32 generations, or 900 years, you will discover that each individual alive at the moment will share a standard ancestor.
Lots of of research which have been carried out in Europe means that ancestor was possible somebody who lived simply 600 years in the past.
In the meantime, the actual fact you do not have to be royal to have royal blood makes the probabilities of anybody being descended from royalty even larger.
For instance, identical to Prince William and Kate Middleton, it is common to see a royal from throughout the globe tying the knot with somebody of a lesser standing – leading to a rise within the variety of folks with a royal declare.
Abroad: Not solely is he associated to the English higher courses, he additionally found that his 24x great-grandfather is the French King Phillip III (pictured)
As reported by The Guardian, Kirill Chashchin, a Russian genealogical researcher, says that ‘nearly royals’ – illegitimate youngsters and people (like Princess Diana) who present royal connections however not a transparent lineage – have ‘muddied the waters.’
Gregory Clarke, who’s an economics professor at UC Davis, goes on to recommend in case your ancestors got here from a area the place royals and commoners intermarried, it will increase the probabilities you descended from royalty.
He mentioned: ‘The noble courses have at all times been pretty open to incorporating rich commoners … So a big share of the fashionable English might be associated to somebody up to now who was a part of the the Aristocracy.’
So it is unsurprising that an entire host of celebrities have claimed to be associated to royalty by some far-distant relation – together with Tom Hanks.
The Hollywood actor is said to British royalty by his father’s aspect of the household. Hanks is a descendent of King John of England, who reigned from 1199 to 1216 – and can also be a 24th cousin to the present monarch of England, Queen Elizabeth II.
Elsewhere, Hugh Grant is a descendant of Henry VII by his mom’s aspect of the household, and he additionally has King James IV of Scotland as an ancestor.
And based on Nick Barratt from the BBC’s Who Do You Assume You Are? Johnny Depp is 20th cousin of Queen Elizabeth II, sharing a great-grandfather along with her that dates again 19 generations.
In the meantime, Ellen DeGeneres is 15th cousin to Kate Middleton and is said to the royal as a direct descendant of Edward III of England. She can also be the 19th cousin, twice eliminated, of Queen Elizabeth II.
Probably the most widespread episodes of Who Do You Assume You Are? featured Danny Dyer, who found in 2015 he was a distant relative to Edward III and William the Conquerer.