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Friday, May 27, 2005

You have a friend (an ancestor?) in Jesus

It's not surprising that 101 individuals have posted the ancestry of Jesus to the WorldConnect Project. After all, the authors of the Gospels themselves showed interest in his genealogy. Matthew traced Christ's lineage (through his step-father Joseph) from Abraham; and Luke traced it all the way back to Adam.

What is surprising is how many individuals have posted information on the progeny of Jesus. Entering the names of "Jesus Christ" and spouse "Mary" into the search engine, and checking the box next to "Has Descendants," brings up 18 databases, some of which claim to show living descendants of the couple.

The common source seems to be Bloodline of the Holy Grail: The Hidden Lineage of Jesus Revealed, by Laurence Gardner. Disclaimer: I've never read it, or The Da Vinci Code (nor do I intend to). The apparent gist: All/most/some of Europe's royal families descend from Jesus and Mary Magdalene, so anyone who can prove his descent from these royals can extend his family tree back to Adam.

It has always baffled me why so many genealogists are anxious to prove their descent from royalty—so anxious that they'll accept any specious theory as true. Gustave Anjou didn't say "There's a sucker born every minute," but he should have.

(For more Biblical fun, try searching for "Adam," wife "Eve," father "God.")

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