King of Great Britain Dies in Australia

Mike Hastings of Jerilderie, Australia passed away at the age of 71. He was a forklift driver by trade. But according to one understanding of British history, he should have sat on the royal throne in place of Elizabeth II:

He made international headlines in 2004 when a documentary team from Britain's Channel Four conducted extensive research into the monarchy and concluded his ancestors were cheated out of the crown in the 15th century. [...]

Hastings was a descendant of England's House of York, whose dynastic struggle with the House of Lancaster became known as the Wars of the Roses and was dramatised by William Shakespeare.

The British documentary's historian Michael Jones found documents in France's Rouen Cathedral that he believed showed King Edward IV, who ruled with a brief interruption from 1461 to 1483, was illegitimate.

Jones believes that Edward's father Richard of York was fighting the French at Pontoise when he was conceived, while his mother Cecily was 200 kilometres (125 miles) away at Rouen, allegedly in the amorous arms of an English archer.

If true, the crown should have passed on to Edward's younger brother George, the duke of Clarence, who was a direct ancestor to Hastings.


Link -via Slate | Photo: AFP/William West

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He's probably more English than the current family.

Before Elizabeth II's mum, they were almost entirely German. They even changed their last name to Windsor (after the castle) to seem less-so during the war.

At one point, they just 'ran out' of people in one family, so they went looking for another to fill the void.

I think Victoria's original last name was Saxe-Coburg-something.
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I'm afraid that there have been many people over the centuries who have claimed to have been cheated out of the crown. They are all, however, wrong. The fact is that whoever takes the crown is fittest to rule. That's how it's always worked. If it can't be decided by direct descent, then things get more complicated but it is still through familial relationships. Sometimes however it must come down to a fight an whoever happens to win is king or queen it's that simple. Nobody ever cheats anybody. It's a complicated game and one in which it's impossible to cheat.

The arguments used by Will above could equally have been used against the Stuarts. When Liz I died she had no descendants. So the thrown fell to the great grandson of her aunt Mary Tudor - I think that makes him her cousin twice removed.

There are always those who will claim that the throne has been stolen. Before Elizabeth I came to the throne her elder half sister Mary I reigned. Mary was second in line to the throne after Henry VIII, so when Henry's son Edward VI died it should have been a simple matter for Mary to become queen. However Edward was protestant and his half sister catholic, so Ed attempted to remove Mary from the line of succession so that Lady Jane Gray, a cousin, would become monarch. Mary deposed Jane by force after only nine days and was crowned. There were those (mostly protestants) who claimed that Mary had stolen the crown. Equally there were those (mostly catholics) who claimed that the crown was never Jane's to claim in the first place. Who was right? Well Mary's supporters of course. Why? Because Mary won.

And what exactly is English or British anyway? Celtic? Jute? Saxon? Angle? Viking? Norman? Remember that King Harold was a Saxon (and there were several other claimants to his throne) but he was deposed by William I (the Conqueror or the Bastard) by invasion.

If we're going to start talking about the right to the throne where do you draw the line. Was William the rightful king or should it have been Edgar? Was Harold the rightful monarch in the first place? Such disputes go right back to Egbert in 802. If you go back over all the disputed monarchs in the last 1,210 years the number of descendants with some sort of claim to the throne must run to six figures.

One thing is for sure, however, the rightful monarch is the one with the crown.
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Actually the native Britons are now called "Welsh".

There was a recent DNA study, and counter to the self-described/implied 'pure' English, which even before recent immigrations could have been about 8 different things,

the Welsh are demonstrably different than the English in their DNA.

-It makes sense, too; since the East and South were the nearest raiding points. I guess Wales was a refuge.

@Jolly: I disagree with your terms, "rightful" and "fittest to rule".

In reality, it's always been much more corrupt and treacherous than any high-minded snobbery of ideals.

It's almost exclusively about cheating.

Here, I fixed it for you:
'They are all, however, correct. Thousands of people over the centuries have been cheated out of their inheritance. -Just ask the Russians.

Having someone stick a sword in you, or shoot you in the face with an arrow, or pay off a few palace guard heavies, etc. is the legacy of almost every single monarchy in world history. They need to come up with a new classification term for them, because there is rarely anything 'noble' about The Nobility.

The fact is that whoever has the crown at this moment is rarely fittest to rule; they're just what we're stuck with at the moment, and usually a descendant of the last guy who stole it from the previous owners.
[...]

One thing is for sure, however, the rightful monarch is probably dead, anonymous and forgotten; the guy with the crown is usually the one with the best archers, poisoners, and spin-doctors,

-or his great great grandson.'
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