Aristocracy not in Guinness DNA

December 17th, 2007 | Posted by Real Beer

A plan to prove the depths of its family roots didn’t quite work out as expected for the Guinness brewing family.

DNA analysis as revealed that brewery founder Arthur Guinness’s claim that he was a descendant of the Magennis chieftains of Iveagh, in Co Down, was wrong, and that the family sprang from the subsidiary McCartan clan, a far less eminent family.

The Guinness founder’s act of social climbing is said to have come as a surprise to Patrick Guinness – the five times great grandson of Arthur and father of the supermodel Jasmine Guinness – who has recently written a biography on the St. James’s Gate brewer.

DNA tests to establish the long term claims first made by Arthur Guinness were carried out on the family’s male Y chromosome in Trinity College Dublin at the request of the Guinness family.

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2 Responses to “Aristocracy not in Guinness DNA”

  1. Patrick Guinness Says:

    Dear Realbeer.com,

    The DNA tests did work out as expected, in that we found out more about our actual origins in the 1600s. As in many families there was an origin-legend that turned out to be wrong. In the context of three wars here in the 1600s, and having to move about 100 miles south as refugees, it is not a huge surprise. No written link to the chieftains was ever found. As a historian, I consider that confirming the chiefs’ written lineage by DNA back to 600 AD was also very interesting in itself, even if we Guinnesses don’t have the same DNA profile.

    Anyone wanting more detail can click on the book’s webpage:
    http://www.peterowen.com/pages/nonfic/Guinness.htm

    With best wishes,
    Patrick Guinness

  2. Tony Rogers Says:

    Guinness is of the highest rank in the brewing aristocracy. Patrick be most proud of your immediate ancestors such as Sir Arthur Guinness. His contribution to our culture, our happiness and our general well being, through the introduction of liquid silk known as Guinness Stout most assuredly dwarfs the importantance of an obscure 7th century chieftain. Sincerely, Tony Rogers