THE BLOODLINE OF BRITAIN
The actual, biological ancestry of all humans, as revealed by science, is detailed in my book In Search of Our Ancient Ancestors: from the Big Bang to Modern Britain, in Science and Myth (Pen and Sword, 2015). That book also explains how, once we had evolved our full, modern human intelligence about 40,000 years ago, we also began trying to find out who we were and where we came from – and what would happen to us when we died – through mythology, and out of this mythologizing process came the Theogony of Hesiod and the fabulous pedigrees of ancient rulers, including those of Gwynedd in North Wales. The latter is important because it enshrines our British origin myth of our national, mythological founder, Brutus of Troy.
The finest flowering of this making of fabulous pedigrees in Britain appears in the Hanes Gruffydd ap Cynan – ‘the history of Griffith ap Cynan’, which was recorded in the 1100s. It runs as follows, as given by Peter Bartrum in his book Early Welsh Genealogical Tracts (1966). I have modernised the spellings and added notes added on the characters concerned, and their spouses, from other sources. It is the culmination of a long process of stitching together sections of genuine history, and myths, which is as explained in my book Brutus of Troy, and the Quest for the Ancestry of the British (Pen and Sword, 2015).
I have continued the line down from Griffith to the present British Royal Family, but there are many, many other descendants of this line – including myself.
Most of the material prior to 6 x great grandfather Merfyn Frych is of doubtful historicity but what is important and interesting here is not what the pedigrees tell us about actual, living people, but rather what our Dark Age ancestors thought about their own origins. It is also important and interesting to see how this extraordinary pedigree provides a vivid link back from the modern world to the radiant world of Classical mythology, including heroes from the work of Virgil and Homer. Our pedigree begins with:
Uranos He was the Titan deity of the starry heavens, whom the Romans (and the Hanes) called Celius. He is given in Hanes a descendant of God, thus: God; Adam and Eve; Seth; Enos; Cainan; Mahalel; Jared; Enoch; Mathuselah; Lamech; Noah; Japheth; Javan; Ciprius; Cretus, who they say was Uranos’s father. However, Hesiod’s Theogony states the ancient Greek belief that Uranos was born from Gaia, Mother Earth: ‘First came the Chasm; and then broad-breasted Earth, secure seat for ever of all the immortals who occupy the peak of snowy Olympus; the misty Tartarus in a remote recess of the broad-pathed Earth; and Eros, the most handsome among the immortal gods… Earth bore first of all one equal to herself, Uranos, starry Heaven, so that he should cover her all about, to be a secure seat for ever for the blessed gods; and she bore the long Mountains, pleasant haunts of the goddesses, the Nymphs who dwell in mountain glens; and she bore the undraining Sea, and its furious swell’, (Hesiod, Theogony, pp. 6-7). So, in ancient Greek terms, Uranos comes at the start of everything. Uranos was father of:
Zeus (Jupiter), who had, by Electra, daughter of the Titan Atlas:
Tros (founder of Troy)
Assaracus, whose brother Ilus was father of Laomedon, father of Priam who was King of Troy at the time of the Trojan War, father of Aeneas’s first wife Creusa
Anchises (lover of Aphrodite)
Aeneas Aeneas is one of the heroes of Homer’s Iliad, and is the heroic subject of Virgil’s Aeneid. He married twice, first to Priam‘s daughter Creusa and secondly to Lavinia, daughteyr of King Latinus. By Creusa, Aeneas had:
Ascanius (Iulus) The Hanes took everything from Ascanius back to Uranos from Classical mythology.
BRUTUS (first king of Britain) Brutus is the subject of my book Brutus of Troy, and the Quest for the Ancestry of the British (Pen and Sword, 2015).
Brutus Ysgwyt Ir (‘Greenshield’)
Bladud (founder of Bath)
Leir (‘King Leir’)
Regan, married to Henwinus
Antonius (Annun: he was probably originally a tribal god, but has here been spliced onto the bottom of the pedigree of Leir’s dynasty)
Manogan, probably wife of Diguellus of the Catuvellauni
Beli Mawr was said within Dark Age British mythology to have married Anna, cousin of the Virgin Mary. Anna was daughter of Joseph of Arimathea and his wife, the daughter of Longinus, natural son of Julius Caesar
Aflech, brother of Cassivellaunus
Coel Hen, ‘Old King Coal’, first wledig of Britain.
Gorwst Ledlumm, king of the north-western British kingdom of Rheged
Elidir Lledanwyn, who married Gwair of Breicheinog, descended from Macsen Wledig and his wife St Helena, a descendant of Bran the Blessed
Sandef, King of the Isle of Man
Gwraid, who married Essylt of Gwynedd, descended through her Breton ancestors from Elaine, the half-sister of Arthur
Merfyn Frych, who married Nesta of Powys, descended from Vortigern
Rhodri Mawr (d. 878), who married Angharad of Ceredigion, descended from St Cadwallader and Cunedda Wledig
Gruffydd ap Cynan (with whom Hanes Gruffydd ap Cynan ends)
Llewelyn the Great (d. 1240)
Gwladys Ddu (d. 1251), wife of Ralph Mortimer (d. 1246)
Roger Mortimer (d. 1282), who married Maude de Braose
Edmund Mortimer (d. 1304)
Roger Mortimer, 1st Earl of March (d. 1330)
Sir Edmund Mortimer (d. 1331)
Roger Mortimer, 2nd Earl of March (d. 1360)
Edmund Mortimer, 3rd Earl of March (d. 1369), who married Philippa, daughter of Lionel Plantagenet, son of Edward III
Roger Mortimer, 4th Earl of March (d. 1398), who married Eleanor Holland, daughter of Thomas Holland, Earl of Kent (whose mother Joan was also descended from Llewellyn the Great through his daughter Helen, wife of Robert de Qunincy)
Ann Mortimer, wife of Richard Plantagenet, Earl of Cambridge. Their descendants include myself, via the Havers family, details of which are here: https://anthonyadolph.co.uk/richard-iii/.
Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York (d. 1460), who married Cecily Nevill
Edward IV (d. 1483)
Elizabeth Plantagenet, wife of Henry VII (d. 1509)
Margaret, wife of James IV of Scots
James V of Scots
Mary Queen of Scots, wife of Henry Stuart Lord Darnley
James VI and I
Elizabeth, wife of Frederick King of Bohemia
Sophia, wife of Ernest Augustus Elector of Hanover
Frederick, Prince of Wales
Edward, Duke of Kent
Victoria, wife of Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha
Charles, Prince of Wales
William, Duke of Cambridge
Prince George of Cambridge