I meant to have this up in time for Halloween, but got distracted with other things. A week late isn’t so bad…
In his quest to preserve the forests of Transylvania, Romania, Prince Charles announced last October that he is a descendant of the 15th-Century warlord Vlad III Dracula, known also as “Vlad Ţepeş” (pronounced tse-pesh) or “Vlad the Impaler” and the potential inspiration behind Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula. And while the claim may seem outrageous, research shows that Charles is indeed correct.
Charles is the great-grandson of Mary of Teck, wife of King George V. Mary’s paternal grandmother was Countess Claudine Rhédey de Kis-Rhéde, who was born in Transylvania to Romanian nobles. de Kis-Rhéde is descendant from two sons of Vlad III in that way that often comes from noble and royal families intermarrying: from Mihnea cel Rău through his son Mircea III Dracul and from Vlad IV Țepeluș through his son Vlaicu III. Eventually, Vlad IV’s descendant Gabor Kendeffy de Malmoliz married Mihnea’s descendant Elizbeta Kemeny; they were Claudine de Kis-Rhéde’s three-times-great-grandparents.
In summation, de Kis-Rhéde is the ten-times-great-granddaughter of Vlad the Impaler through two of his sons, which makes Prince Charles his fifteen-times-great-grandson, and a direct double descendant. Furthermore, among Mary of Teck’s other descendants are the Dukes of Gloucester and Kent, whose families make up the rest of the British Royal Family.
And people say that genealogy is boring and dry…
Disclaimer: I am not a genealogist by any stretch of the imagination; in fact, in the time since I first wrote this article, it has come to my attention that there could be at least one other possible line of descent from Vlad Ţepeş to Claudine de Kis-Rhéde, and perhaps a few more. (Oh, those intermarrying nobles…) In fact, today the Telegraph ran a story showing that Ágnes Kendeffy de Malmoliz’s mother descends from Vlad Ţepeş’ half-brother. The above article is merely what my research dug up.