Not so long ago, we wrote about resources for researching your French noble ancestors. Uncannily, that was a most popular post. With a sigh, we accept that more would be appreciated and so, we introduce today the recently launched "Noble Wiki", (also calling itself "Noblepédia"), a collaborative effort to gather together the genealogical data on France's noble families. As wikis go, this one is a tot, with a mere thirty-five pages but, given the subject, sure to grow apace.
Navigation is non-existent. Links are as yet few. The page entitled Liste des familles nobles has a nice explanation of the importance of knowing the difference between titles of the pre-Revolutionary era, the First Empire, the Restauration, and the Second Empire. It gives its sources, and then presents an alphabetical listing of names of noble families taken from those sources.
Assertions of nobility by contributors are already present and are forceful. We feel that those making such assertions might benefit from listening to the radio interview in 1976 with one of the authors of Dictionnaire de la noblesse française, Fernand de Saint Simon, a relation of the Duc de Saint Simon. For those of you descended from nobles, it will be a window on their views. De Saint Simon's nuggets in the interview include:
- "We do not interfere with history." (When asked if he would try to reclaim the family's lost title.)
- "Nobility is as much a service as a privilege."
- "I have no modesty but I have great humility."
He seems never to realize or perhaps to deign to notice, that the interviewer finds him a bizarre dinosaur.
If you are seeking the genealogy of your noble ancestor, Noble Wiki is not yet big enough to be of much help. If you have completed the genealogy of your noble line, by all means, create a page there and stake out your territory.
©2012 Anne Morddel