Monday, April 13, 2015

K is for King

I got lost online today looking at my genealogy on a website.  I knew that most of my ancestors came from Ireland in the late 1600's.  I knew there was some English and Scottish mixed in there as well.  What was really exciting that I found today, is that William I "The Lion" King of Scotland is my 23rd great-grandfather.  I also found forks in the tree that led to several other noble families, including kings in Denmark and England, and even the King of Troy.  I also found a weird little branch that traces back to Odin, yes THAT Odin.  His name was Baldr and he supposedly arose from the sea.

The ancestor which I feel most affinity for is of course King William of Scotland.  I have always felt a special pull to the British Isles, especially Scotland and Ireland.  I knew my family came from Ireland but it turns out they came through Ireland from Scotland.  I decided today to do a little research about "The Lion" and find out if there are any similarities between him and myself or my family.

William was crowned King at the age of 22.  His reign lasted 50 years, which is a very long time in the 2nd century.  William is the grandson of King David of Scotland.  He was also known as William "The Rough." The title of "The Lion" came about after his death due to the lion on the flag used to represent His Royalty.  In the scant information that could be found about his personality, he is described as "headstrong."  I can identify with that throughout a long line of my ancestors.  He is also described as having red hair, another trait seen in my family.  His wife was a descendant of King Henry I of England.  Interestingly, William's mother and father shared great-great-great-great grandparents, Richard II, Duke of Normandy and Judith De Bertagne.  It's inevitable that every family tree will not fork at some point.  I'm just thankful it was during the time of the Royals and not  on my branch of the family tree.

Unfortunately there is not much information that I could find today about William "The Rough."  I have been inspired to keep searching and I also know that the pull I feel toward Scotland is literally in my genes.  I am excited to keep working on this new endeavor.  The connection I feel with my ancestors is quite real and I have felt it for a long time, even before I could put names to them.  I'd love to say that of course, I knew that I had descended from royal blood, but I did not.  Another thing that is exciting about this work is sharing it with my children.  They are very excited to know about their heritage.  It's really nice to have some sense of background and belonging.