The Hastings connection

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As Gary Boyd Roberts indicated in his press release, “Meghan Markle is related to Prince Harry hundreds of times over,” with the closest kinship being that of seventeenth cousins.

This chart shows three more kinships between Meghan Markle and her future husband, two through Prince Harry’s mother, and one through his father. The closest ancestors are Sir Robert Hildyard (who died in 1501) and Elizabeth Hastings. (Harry’s line in this instance goes through his mother Diana, making Meghan and Harry sixteenth cousins once removed.) Two other kinships go through Elizabeth Hastings’s brother, Hugh Hastings, de jure 10th Baron Hastings. These go down through the Blakiston family to both Prince Charles and Princess Diana, making Meghan and Harry seventeenth cousins three times removed (through Diana), and seventeenth cousins once removed (through Charles). Harry’s sister-in-law, Catherine Middleton, also descends from the Blakistons through her Conyers ancestors, as was revealed in a past American Ancestors article, making Meghan and Catherine seventeenth cousins twice removed.

These [lines] go down through the Blakiston family to both Prince Charles and Princess Diana…

These Hastings siblings were the great-grandchildren of Michael de la Pole, 2nd Earl of Suffolk, and Lady Katherine Stafford, and this chart provides the latter’s descent from King Edward I. Also descending from Katherine and Michael, as shown on the chart, is Anne of Bohemia, the wife of Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand I (1503–1564), whose descendants include most later rulers of the Holy Roman and Austrian Empires, France, Spain, Great Britain, Russia, Prussia and Germany, Portugal, Netherlands, Belgium, Sardinia, the Two Sicilies and Italy, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Greece. Quite a lot of distant kinsman for Ms. Markle!

For additional sources, especially behind Margaret Kerdeston and the connections to later European monarchs, see Gary Boyd Roberts, The Royal Descents of 600 Immigrants, 368–69 (soon to be updated).

About Christopher C. Child

Chris Child has worked for various departments at NEHGS since 1997 and became a full-time employee in July 2003. He has been a member of NEHGS since the age of eleven. He has written several articles in American Ancestors, The New England Historical and Genealogical Register, and The Mayflower Descendant. He is the co-editor of The Ancestry of Catherine Middleton (NEHGS, 2011), co-author of The Descendants of Judge John Lowell of Newburyport, Massachusetts (Newbury Street Press, 2011) and Ancestors and Descendants of George Rufus and Alice Nelson Pratt (Newbury Street Press, 2013), and author of The Nelson Family of Rowley, Massachusetts (Newbury Street Press, 2014). Chris holds a B.A. in history from Drew University in Madison, New Jersey.

4 thoughts on “The Hastings connection

  1. Given that the average family in the fifteenth century was probably eight, two parents and six children, I just have to wonder how many people currently living are seventeenth cousins once, twice or thrice removed from some royal whose name nobody can remember or particularly cares about.

  2. I am actually more interested in her paternal white Ancestry and her African-American Ancestry In the United States. I’d like to see a decent short of her ancestors at least into the immigrants to the United States

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