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Friday, June 4, 2010

One of the oldest living man's tombstone

After his death of 15 November 1635 it reads as follows:

K.HEN.7. K.HEN.8. K.EDW.6. Q.MA. Q.ELIZ.

Thomas Parr an ordinary laborer in pastoral life of agriculture. Parr was born in 1483, at Winnington, Shropshire or Parr was said to have been born in 1483 near Shrewsbury [ county town in Shropshire] or Wollaston [ county village in Shropshire [ near the Welsh border] is semi documented as being the oldest living man. Though there are others with good luck ands something else in their favor, who lived nearly that long.

I heard about him on one of the late night tv commercials about colon cleansing. I had to browse to learn more. My first thoughts as I was reading was from practice of finding out about forebears and descendants to see if there were others in the family who were lucky to live just as long. I also discovered more than one source for information on him. And Of course I am not nearly done.
Secondly, I wondered if it was the region, were there others in this region who lived so long. So far the articles have not stated that others in this region were gifted in this way as well. It would be interesting to hear of any genealogists studying this area reports on the longevity of their relatives!! ?/

And of course the subject matter always switches from his life to his life style. We wonder what he did to live so long. Oddities, secrets, etc. Food, Exercise.
Evidently he lived the simple life, until
he made a trip to London to visit King Charles of England. He was treated to a two-week-long party, indulging in alcohol and all manner of food, whereupon he died.
You and I are probably thinking about Genetics. What was handed him from the start that he had to work with. Ad how was he raised. His father was a farm laborer as well. He learned his way of life from his father John.

Back then an 'autopsy' was done on him to see what could be learned. I myself think it could not be up to modern day standards.He was suppose to have been very healty for his age of over one hundred and fifty years old.

He either died from this life change that was thrown at him by the king, A change in life style including a change in diet, probably more leisure. He said his long life was from a vegetarian diet and 'moral temperance'.[Another source says he lived on
green cheese, onions, bread and buttermilk. He didn't smoke and rarely drank.] Another source hints it was because he didn't marry until he was eighty. [ Now I am pulling your leg]
As usual you have to take peoples word with a grain of salt.[ smile]

Many of you are wondering about documentation. One source claims he is documented.

His fame was supported to public around 1635 by the king Charles I. I can see why Charles1, a believer in devine right would take such an interest in Thomas Parr's life.
"He was a sickly child and not expected to live, so when his father inherited the throne of England in 1603, Charles was left in the care of nurses when the Royal family left for London. Ironically, in 1612, Charles was still alive when his elder brother died and Charles became heir to the thrones of England and Scotland. In 1635 His interest was gained with the intention of gaining his life's secret by the the Thomas Howard the 21 st earl of Arundel an estate owner in Shropshire. This probably wasn't the best news for Thomas Parr. The city living led to his demise.
He was famous and popular and has had his portrait painted by Rueben and Van Dyke [ popular with King Charles1] .I for one want to see it. A photograph of him here.And Image here.

I shall edit as I learn more. Sorry I am not as thorough as I could be.
His father was John and he was born at parish of Alberbury of Winnington.

So far I have his first wife at his age of eighty because of his life in the army. She Jane Taylor and she bore him a son and a daughter who died in infancy. " A
t the age of 100, he was obliged to perform public penance for adultery, after fathering an illegitimate child by a farm girl, Katherine Milton"
It says here that he married her.
-Married second time at 122 years
After ten years and his first wife's death he married Jane Lloyd with no children.

Unnamed author at this address []Gives good reasons for long life/ diet, etc. this author also points out one thing I wanted to know about a descendant. Thomas Parr's grandson, Robert Parr,
"born at Kniver in 1663 and died in 1787, at age 124 years old. Not quite as long as Old Parr but still better than anyone else has been able to do in all the centuries since!"

Autopsy or inspection [ Post - Mortem ] of his body done by good physician and researcher William Harvey.

Note a dispute of claims here:

William Harvey, (1578-1657), who discovered the circulation of the blood, performed a post mortem on Parr's body. The results were published in the book De ortu et natura sanguinis by John Betts as an attachment. According to P. Lüth the results of the autopsy suggest that Thomas Parr was probably under 70 years of age.

It is possible that Parr's records were confused with those of his grandfather. Parr did not claim to remember specific events from the 15th cent

There is a lot online can be read about him. He has been noted far down in history. I am not sure how I ever missed the references to him over the years!.

Note : Disputes of information of marriages and heirs here.

Probably this is the most excellent and truthful document about his tree and life you can find.
I love the picture of his cottage at that link. I wish I could pursue this tree more, but I lack time to do so. At the family forum of family tree maker I noticed a few who claimed to have info as descendants. I have wondered if they had it mixed up with sir Thomas Parr. I am sorry, but I did not bother to contact those with claims due to one with a email, which had a name of a suspicious nature.

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