The Risks and Rewards of Royal Incest
2010 09 01
By David Dobbs | NationalGeographic.com
When New England missionary Hiram Bingham arrived in Hawaii in 1820, he was dismayed to find the natives indulging in idolatry, hula dancing, and, among the ruling family, incest. The Hawaiians themselves did not share Bingham’s shock at the royals’ behavior. Royal incest, notes historian Joanne Carando, was "not only accepted but even encouraged" in Hawaii as an exclusive royal privilege.
King Tut’s family was not the only royalty to have close relations among its close relations.
Photo: Baron/Getty Images
In fact, while virtually every culture in recorded history has held sibling or parent-child couplings taboo, royalty have been exempted in many societies, including ancient Egypt, Inca Peru, and, at times, Central Africa, Mexico, and Thailand. And while royal families in Europe avoided sibling incest, many, including the Hohenzollerns of Prussia, the Bourbons of France, and the British royal family, often married cousins.
The Spanish Habsburgs, who ruled for nearly 200 years, frequently married among close relatives. Their dynasty ended in 1700 with the death of Charles II, right, a king so riddled with health and development problems that he didn’t talk until he was four or walk until he was eight. He also had trouble chewing food and couldn’t sire a child.
The physical problems faced by Charles and the pharaoh Tutankhamun, the son of siblings, point to one possible explanation for the near-universal incest taboo: Overlapping genes can backfire. Siblings share half their genes on average, as do parents and offspring. First cousins’ genomes overlap 12.5 percent. Matings between close relatives can raise the danger that harmful recessive genes, especially if combined repeatedly through generations, will match up in the offspring, leading to elevated chances of health or developmental problems—perhaps Tut’s partially cleft palate and congenitally deformed foot or Charles’s small stature and impotence.
Pharaoh Tutankhamun’s skull defines his general appearance. Its anyone’s guess what his skin color was. This particular model (right) was prepared from a CT-scan-based "cast" of his skull (left) without knowing its identity. Reconstruction by Michael Anderson. Photos in composite © 2007 Michael Anderson and Mark Thiessen © 2007 National Geographic Society. Image: Source
If the royals knew of these potential downsides, they chose to ignore them. According to Stanford University classics professor Walter Scheidel, one reason is that "incest sets them apart." Royal incest occurs mainly in societies where rulers have tremendous power and no peers, except the gods. Since gods marry each other, so should royals.
Incest also protects royal assets. Marrying family members ensures that a king will share riches, privilege, and power only with people already his relatives. In dominant, centralized societies such as ancient Egypt or Inca Peru, this can mean limiting the mating circle to immediate family. In societies with overlapping cultures, as in second-millennium Europe, it can mean marrying extended family members from other regimes to forge alliances while keeping power among kin.
And the hazards, while real, are not absolute. Even the high rates of genetic overlap generated in the offspring of sibling unions, for instance, can create more healthy children than sick ones. And royal wealth can help offset some medical conditions; Charles II lived far better (and probably longer, dying at age 38) than he would have were he a peasant.
A king or a pharaoh can also hedge the risk of his incestuous bets by placing wagers elsewhere. He can mate, as Stanford classicist Josiah Ober notes, "with pretty much anybody he wants to." Inca ruler Huayna Capac (1493-1527), for instance, passed power not only to his son Huáscar, whose mother was Capac’s wife and sister, but also to his son Atahualpa, whose mother was apparently a consort. And King Rama V of Thailand (1873-1910) sired more than 70 children—some from marriages to half sisters but most with dozens of consorts and concubines. Such a ruler could opt to funnel wealth, security, education, and even political power to many of his children, regardless of the status of the mother. A geneticist would say he was offering his genes many paths to the future.
It can all seem rather mercenary. Yet affection sometimes drives these bonds. Bingham learned that even after King Kamehameha III of Hawaii accepted Christian rule, he slept for several years with his sister, Princess Nahi’ena’ena—pleasing their elders but disturbing the missionaries. They did it, says historian Carando, because they loved each other.
Article from: nationalgeographic.com
The throne clones: How the Royal Family inherited more than just their titles
One Family, One Bloodline, One Rule
Video from: YouTube.com
Also tune into:
Laurence Gardner - The Royal Bloodlines & the Desposyni
Laurence Gardner - The Grail, Bloodline Origins, Annunaki & Mono-Atomic Gold
Lloyd Pye - The Annunaki & Genetic Engineering
Lloyd Pye - Human Design & Properties of Annunaki Genes
Lloyd Pye - Human Origins, Intervention Theory & Genetic Experimentation
Ralph Ellis - King Jesus from Kam (Egypt) to Camelot & Dave Truman - Beyond Knowledge Conference
William F Mann - The Templar’s Search for the One Bloodline, DNA, Sinclair, The Grail, & The Vikings
Dr. Joye Jeffries Pugh - The Cloning of Jesus, Royal Bloodlines & The Antichrist
David Livingstone - The Dying God, The Illuminati & Bloodlines
Stewart Swerdlow - Rennes Le Chateau, Bloodlines, Disappearing Bees & Fake Alien Invasion
Hugh Montgomery - The God-Kings: Babylon, Ulvungar & Oden
Hugh Montgomery - The God-Kings: Outremer & The Descendants of Jesus
Nigel Kerner - The Greys, Genetic Engineering, Bloodlines, Races & DNA
Henrik Palmgren - The Hidden Roots of the European Union
Longevity & the Grail
Freeman - Obama, Cloning and the Sorcerers of Atlantis
Strange Egypt Documentary (Video)
Grey Aliens and the Harvesting of Souls: The Conspiracy to Genetically Tamper with Humanity
Inbred Illuminati Bloodlines - Visual Proof (Video) :)
Hitler Bloodline Linked To Child Of American Icon Anna Nicole Smith
"Twilight"s Robert Pattinson related to Dracula?
American Royalty: Palin related to Princess Diana and Roosevelt
Ancient Egypt Royal Incest, The Harem and Marriage
Ramesses II: Anatomy of a Pharaoh and his family (specifically, his women)
King Tut’s DNA is Western European?
Egypt to soon announce King Tut DNA test results
Latest News from our Front Page
Department of Transportation Uses LRAD Sound Cannons Against Drivers
2014 04 16
The Missouri Department of Transportation revealed two newly acquired LRAD sound cannons this week, which will reportedly be used to target vehicles that speed in work zones.
Coming in at $25,000 a piece, the Long-Range Acoustic Device, a sonic weapon best know for its use against protesters and insurgents in Afghanistan, will alert drivers to road conditions by shooting a loud ...
An ’Unknown Holocaust’ and the Hijacking of History
2014 04 16
An address by Mark Weber, director of the Institute for Historical Review, delivered at an IHR meeting in Orange County, California, on July 25, 2009. (A report on the meeting is posted here.)
We hear a lot about terrible crimes committed by Germans during World War II, but we hear very little about crimes committed against Germans. Germany’s defeat in May ...
Ex-Mayor Bloomberg Starting $50 Million Gun-Control Network
2014 04 16
Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg ramped up his efforts to fight gun violence on Wednesday with a plan to spend $50 million on a grassroots network to organize voters on gun control.
The initiative’s political target is the powerful pro-gun lobby, including the National Rifle Association, that spends millions of dollars each year to back gun-rights supporters.
Bloomberg’s group, called Everytown ...
Nearly 300 missing after South Korean ferry sinks
2014 04 16
A ferry carrying 462 people, mostly high school students on an overnight trip to a tourist island, sank off South Korea’s southern coast on Wednesday, leaving more than 280 people missing despite a frantic, hours-long rescue by dozens of ships and helicopters. At least four people were confirmed dead and 55 injured.
The high number of people unaccounted for -- likely ...
Flash Points of Tyranny: It Doesn’t End With The Bundy Standoff
2014 04 15
To the discerning eye they are everywhere; Flashpoints of tyranny threatening to push the nation into open revolt. The standoff between the Bundy ranch and the BLM feds is a visceral example of growing discontent over an expanding federal government.
These abuses have occurred over many decades, with a focused intent. Centralization of power and a steady erosion of personal wealth ...
|More News » |