Imaginative Ancestry: 3. Caxton’s England, 1422-1491


My ancestors may not have known William Caxton but they sure as heck were influenced by him, as were all of YOUR ancestors if you live in the English speaking world. His machine did more than just print “things”...... it prepared the way for a new language, literary English, in which multiple dialects were unified … Continue reading Imaginative Ancestry: 3. Caxton’s England, 1422-1491

My great grandfather “like a rolling stone ….”


My DNA results were a bit of a puzzle. Despite showing the bulk of my ancestry originating in the southeast as well as the southwest of England, from census and birth records I appeared to have NONE from the southeast. My mother's line, going back 400, years were all from Cornwall and my father's line … Continue reading My great grandfather “like a rolling stone ….”

Imaginative Ancestry: 2. Chaucer’s England 1340-1400


The 14th century in England brought about social change that was possibly unrivalled until the era of the Industrial Revolution. And this is the point of going so far back in time when researching your family tree, because the changes begun here would affect the lives of my earliest ancestors, traced so far, only a … Continue reading Imaginative Ancestry: 2. Chaucer’s England 1340-1400

Imaginative Ancestry: 1. The shifting fabric


“Our imagination craves to behold our ancestors as they really were, going about their daily business and daily pleasure. In fact the whole appeal of history (and ancestry) (my addition) is imaginative, and without social history especially, economic history is barren and political history is unintelligible” These words are taken from the opening chapter of … Continue reading Imaginative Ancestry: 1. The shifting fabric