Hello, my name is Pablo Briand and this is the weblog of Our Briand Family’s genealogy. My desire is that it will help to make a feedback with all of you. The other objective of this blog is to do emphasis in some aspects of genealogy, necessary for researchers, as the historical, social, political and cultural frames of different moments of the past. The genealogy’s world is cooperative and always shows solidarity; or, at least, is what we dream about.
I was drops in the air looking up at the stars… A word in a letter. I was a primeval book… I was lanterns of light… I was a bridge spanning sixty river mouths… I was a string in a phantom harp. Foam on water, spark in a fire… What will be, what is, what was once to be perceived…
(From an old Celtic poem, translated by Robert Graves in “The Battle of the Trees”).
WHAT DO WE LOOK FOR?
Past is a fiction, but a necessary one. (Click on the photo to see the whole post).
SHINTO: THE JAPANESE ANCIENT CULT OF THE ANCESTORS
All the human advanced societies, passed, in some moment of its history, for the stage of being ancestors’ worshippers. It is not any more than to walk along a cemetery and to watch the elegant tombs adorned with statues, stylized designs and colored with flowers, to realize that this feature is not but the nature of the former ancestors worship, inherited across the centuries. But in Japan the Shinto has deep roots in its society, up to the point of having been an official religion until 1945. (Click in the photo to see whole note).
HOW THE ACADIANS LIVED
For those who have had forbears in Canada, in the French Acadia, this one is an as detailed as possible frame of the epoch. A real heroic deed that of the brave Acadians. (Click in the photo to see whole note).
Louis XIV, king of France, who reigned 72 years, (1643-1715), needed permanently economic resources for his wars and sumptuous constructions. Worried because his colonies could be more populated and the maritime trade needed to grow, he published in 1693 an edict saying that “it would not be more dishonorable for the nobility to work, exercising the maritime trade ". At this time, for the nobles, to work was equivalent to “not to live nobly ", a disgrace. In addition, in this case, the nobles would lose their condition to be exempt from taxes, and should pay them, on having lost their nobility. By means of this edict, the king absolves them of this fault, besides fomenting the overseas commerce. He simply modified the ethics of the French society throughout a royal edict.
BASIC GENETICS FOR GENEALOGISTS
How could be, that if we share almost a 99% of our genetic material with the chimpanzees, we share only 50% with our own siblings? The answer is very simple: all the living organisms share a basical genotype. The 50% we share with our brothers is above this base. It means that, if we share a 99% of our genome with the chimpanzees, above this percentage, it is, on the 1% we don't share anything else with them. But with our brothers we share the 50% of the difference above the common base. Which means that, considering that there's a genetic common base that we share with our brothers, at the fecundation, this genome is divided in two: 50% contributed by the father and the other 50% by the mother.
WHAT “BÉNÉVOLES” ARE?
Specially spread in France, they are groups of genealogists who give free information about civil documents, official and private, being those available documents in the zones where they live. They exchange information with other "bénévoles". Also they do services of translation of languages and paleographic translation. Only it’s necessary to them to receive gratefulness, and it’s important to not forget it. There is an excellent service of benevolent genealogists in
Do you have an ancestor who has lived in New York in 1890? Do you want to locate the ancient street? You can search in cities of all the world over on this amazing collection of David Rumsey Maps Collection, of London. Old cartography, from the very first moment until wherever you want to locate something. Just google the name, David Rumsey Collection, and you will be surprised.
ABOUT THE "LINEAGE":
Two old stories will illustrate to those who believe that someone is important for his or her lineage. Marcus Tullius Cicero (106 B.C.- 43 B.C.) was a famous Roman senator very well known for the beauty and the strength of his oratory. He did not have any lineage - and this fact was important in the ancient Rome-, and he used to have long discussions with his opponent in the senate, Lucius Sergius Catilina, who was the last heir of the noblest patrician family, the Sergia Gens. In a heated discussion, Catilina said to Cicero: “You so much speak, and your lineage scarcely begins with you ". And Cicero responded him: “And yours, with you will end ". In Don Quixote of La Mancha, Sancho Panza is elected a governor of an “insula”(isle); the people claim him not to have noble lineage for the position. To what he answers: " Referring to my nobility, though I do not deal much on nobilities, I know that, of none of my grandparents, there are in the house executorial papers, but some faiths of baptism; ... we are former Christians and honest people, I have the rest as a boast, because we all are sons of Adam and Eve, and each one is the son of his works ".
Is the science that studies the reading, deciphering and translation to our current writing of the ancient and medieval manuscripts, the ancient handwriting. When we meet civil documents of the15th, 16th or 18th centuries, we see that the writing is very different from ours current; they use another font, other abbreviations, other forms of capital letters, another style of draft, and even the words are written each other differently. Some of them are impossible to read: they are, at the first sight, hieroglyphs. Here an example of what we can find. The paleographers dominate very well all the codes to understand them. There are several lessons of paleography in the web: I tried to follow them and I realized of how useless is that: if one does not devote itself, and practices, staying for years dedicated to the topic and already has seen thousands of documents, there is no way of easily understanding any document. The more indicated is to send the document to a professional paleographer: some of them are doing free translations, in francegenweb.org, for example, or there are also those who charge for the service. In the ancient manuscripts the contractions and the abbreviations were so much utilized; the paper in which they were writing was at those times very expensive, and it was necessary to save space. Most of the symbols that we use today, like &, for "and", or Mr., for "Mister", or N º, for "number", etc., are an inheritance of these writings. The letter "ñ", for example, was born of writing "gn" abbreviated, with this tilde on the “n”, and was adopted by the Spanish language, because still it’s used "gn" in French and Italian.
Saturday, January 22, 2011
EYELASHES IN HISTORY
Following with the hair history, the eyelashes history and how women were interested along the centuries about the eyelashes' style, could also be interesting for those who try to learn something else about our ancestors' appearance.
The Buddhism considers the intuition to be the supreme value of the intelligence. It is reliable because it has one only step. The reasoning is developed in several sections, and there is where stalks the possibility of error. The intuition is accurate; the reasoning is fallible. (Image: courtesy keikoart.com)
Robert Ardrey, (1908-1980), science writer and screenwriter, proposed in 1961 in his book "African Genesis" the theory elaborated by Raymond Dart in the 1950’s, that human ancestors were different from other primates because of their superior aggressiveness, and from this aggressiveness was born the impulse which led to the evolution of the human being. (Click in the photo to see complete note).
MADAM OR MISS?
Who is searching on old civil French documents, will have noticed probably that often a wife, a married woman is mentioned as "demoiselle" (miss). It sounds a little weird, certainly. What happens is that in the France of the 15th, 16th, 17th and 18th century only were "dames" the noble ladies. The bourgeoises' wives, for richer that they were, were "demoiselles". After the French Revolution (1789) and The Declaration of Human Rights, the bourgeois ladies claimed, if they were married, for an equal treatment with that of the noble ladies. From there we have the current treatments that we use today, but that were not used before the end of the 18th century. From " Dame " derives "madame" (my lady) and from "demoiselle", "mademoiselle".
A location in the time for genealogists. Provided that we record ancestors in the previous centuries, we must wonder: how these centuries were, how they thought, what vision do they have of the world? How is the course of the history, from the Middle Age to the Modern Age? How appeared and how did influence the Renaissance in the people of that age and in the later centuries? In a single sentence: how was the environment of our ancestors? (Click in the photo to see whole note).
PUBLIC INSTRUCTION AT THE 19TH CENTURY
Until near 1830, most of the Europe statesmen, almost all absolutist monarchs, were not interested about the idea of public education. This task was left to the parents, who sent their children to religious schools, in the case they could pay it. The concept at that time was that the people had no need of education. If they had to learn manual labors, the education would make them lose time. And on the other hand, it was dangerous, because, it was said, it might create amongst the population seeds of rebellion. When in 1815 was presented the project of Public Education in the House of Commons Chamber of Great Britain, a Lord flatly rejected the project saying: “If a horse knew as much as a man, I would not like to be its rider ". When the public education began to be orchestrated, already in the half of the 19th century, it was almost only for men. They did not see very clear how it might help to women, and, as Napoleon I said, “Since they are not called to live in public, and their sole destination is the marriage”. Serve this commentary as an idea about in what type of society our ancestors grew up.
Fortunately, to click in this window is not going to take you anywhere. It’s only here in order to allow you to insert into it your imagination.
WHAT THE HERALDS USED TO DO?
In their medieval origin, the heralds were speakers of a prince or a State, acting as diplomatic envoys, taking and bringing around messages of war or peace to military chiefs. Later, this duty was a sole right of the “king of arms”, and the heralds devoted themselves to identify the opponents in the tilts of cavalry, because the knight’s faces were hidden by helmets, for what they had to know thoroughly the knights lineage and heraldries. From that task was developed the heraldry, which is the study of genealogy and blazoning arms of the different surnames. (Source: Muy Interesante Magazine, Spain)
DON'T LOSE THESE GENEALOGICAL SITES
Based in Bnai Atarot, an israelian village close to Tel Aviv, which was founded by German Templars in 1902, My Heritage.com is actually one of the most important and dynamic genealogical sites. They offer to build familiar trees, creation of genealogy websites, a database with more than 32 millon of subscribers and more than 50 millon of photographies, handled with a new system of facial recognition; to organize familiar events, and a database with familiar medical histories. A very active and brillant community, a real social network for integration, learning, and...to meet other people in your same research.
Gen Briand is a blog of genealogy attached to the website Our Briand Family. This story is about 5 centuries and 14 generations, for that many searchers might find on there their kinship.
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