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Everyone's Related

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  • Everyone's Related

    I wonder if anyone else caught this gem from the Washington Post:

    What I got out of if is that no matter what lengths we go to find "concrete" ancestors through narrow lines of descent, we've got the blood of the famous ancients in us anyway.

  • #2
    "There is no king who has not had a slave among his ancestors, and no slave who has not had a king among his."

    Helen Keller (1880 - 1968)


    • #3
      I guess it's really true that "Every little girl is a princess." (gag)


      • #4
        Thanks for posting the link Andrew. This certainly puts it all in perspective.


        • #5
          It is one thing to know that this is theoretically true. It is another thing entirely to know the generation by generation links to various people.

          Timothy Peterman


          • #6
            Originally posted by Andrew M
            I wonder if anyone else caught this gem from the Washington Post:
            This is basically worthless bunk.

            First, even if it were true, it would have absolutely zero practical or scientific significance. The human genome consists of only about 25,000 genes. At 15 generations back, a human may have as many as 32,000 ancestors, meaning that most of those ancestors are contributing zero or one gene to the descendant. Beyond 15 generations, most of those ancestors contributed absolutely zero to the living descendant.

            The only exceptions, of course, are those of the strict patrilineal line, from which one inherits the Y chromosome, and the strict matrilineal line, from which one inherits the mitochondrial DNA. This is precisely why, more than 15 generations back, these two lines are really the only ones worth tracking.

            Second, the article's claim is a nonsensical generalization of Britain's phenomenal population expansion and migration to the rest of the world, which generally has experienced neither such expansion nor such migration. The mathematical simulation (i.e., video game) on which the article is probably basing its claim is totally unrealistic, and is clearly designed for political purposes.


            • #7
              Everyone being related to kings or famous people is nonsense. There were many branches off early man and not all those branches contained kings, queens or nobility at all. So saying everyone has royal blood in their veins is pure fantacy. The ony thing that article proved is that in America anyone can make a living at something whether they are good at it or not. This is doubly true for writers.


              • #8
                Its funny how an admixture of words and numbers can cause filthy lucre to move.