I am probably not the best person to take on all the points you mention, but
I will try and skim the surface. My comments are towards the male line
unless indicated otherwise.
The Y-DNA Boyd family page on the Family Tree DNA Web page shows that not
all Boyds evolved from the same father over recent history; or at least back
to the 1100s that you mention will do for now.
The largest component by far is the R1b1a2* Boyds. However there is a large
contingent of A3b2* Boyds who will now go under the new DNA category of
A1b1b2b*. There are also representatives of other genetic groups, but no
other group of any appreciable number is emerging. (Rb1a2 is sometimes
referred to as U198).
Of course I have made the assumption that the tested Boyds are
representative of all Boyds.
There can be many reasons for these different male chromosomes cropping up:
adoption, "out of marriage" activity, servants taking Master's name, an
unmarried woman having a child; to take 4 of many possibilities.
Had one of these interlopers entered recently, then only one or a few would
probably have that different male chromosome. Had this happened 500 years
ago and successive generations had large families then there would be a
large contingent. By now this single interloper could have present-day
offspring that exceed the numbers of original family.
The most likely males to carry the original chromosome are the present day
I cannot say whether I am paternally connected without knowing which
contingent the Kilmarnock Boyds belong. However, the unusual and typically
non-European nature of the A1b1b2b* subhaplogroup, my guess would be that
it's not my side. However it is a guess and no more than that.
Chapter One or the Foreword of your book should cover this factor. You also
need to keep in mind that the other people you mention that have previously
mapped the Boyd history did not have Y-DNA results to consider. If your name
was Boyd then you were in the Clan unless there was something obvious to
Y-DNA testing could also indicate how close paternally the Stewards are to
us. That would need both a Kilmarnock Boyd and present-day Stuart to take
the Y-DNA tests, but note that I use the words indicate and paternally.
Y-DNA mutations are not a constant value, although Family Tree DNA do offer
guidance based on mean values for mutation. Sharing a mother would not cause
the same Y-DNA result; it's the father than counts. Dr J H Round could have
only shown rather than proved, even then it was shown with only a degree of
confidence - 50% ? 60% ? 99% ?
To say that all Boyds stem from one person would require the continuous
taking of the Father's name and no additional males being a party to the
line. Without DNA testing it would not be possible to assert that all with
the name Boyd. Although James Boyd changed his last name to Hay, he was
still a Boyd when it comes down to Y-DNA.
It is quite possible that the A1b1b2b* Boyds were not even on the British
Isles or using the Boyd name in 1467 when the lands were being finally
One other ideological point you may wish to consider with you book. Are you
looking at the purported lineage in that you are interested in what is
claimed? Or, are you more interested in actual lineage. For my part, it's a
combination of both.
Whichever way you take it, there is obviously a common allegiance between
all the holders of the Boyd surname.
From: Mike Boyd [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: 27 March 2013 02:28
To: boyd(a)rootsweb.com; davejboyd(a)ntlworld.com; boyd-dna(a)rootsweb.com;
Cc: tsboyd(a)bigpond.com; pitadomino(a)gmail.com; gailboyd(a)mac.com
Subject: Re: [BOYD] [BOYD-DNA] Boyd of Ballycastle and lost Cadet Branches
Perhaps now might be a good time to stand back and to take a "overview" of
Most historian have said that the Boyds were a Royal Sept of the Stewarts as
Simon was a brother to Walter who became the Steward of Scotland. However,
I understand from the DNA group that the Boyd DNA is different from the
This was shown (or proved) by Dr J H Round in a article he wrote in 1902
saying that Walter and Simon had the same mother (Aveline Des Hesdin) but
different father - Alan Fitz Flaad for Walter and for Simon, Robert Fits
We have been told by history that ALL BOYDS stem from Simon's son Sir Robert
Boyd whose date of birth in in the 1100 AD.
King George III, when he executed the 4th Earl of Kilmarnock, William Boyd
in August 1746, the Boyd family tree written out which said that the Boyd
name started in 1111 A. D. However no source is cited for this date, and it
is unclear if it might refer to Sir Robert Boyd or his father Simon. But we
do know that from the first Sir Robert Boyd there are some 28 generations of
the Clan down to the current head of the Clan - Lord Robin. We do not know
who many Boyds are in the World or Boyd descendants, but we assume that over
the 28 generations that if each person only had 2 children, there would be
some 128 million Boyd descendant in the World today. (While, at last count,
I have some 300,000 Boyds listed on my PC with some of these being
duplicates, or less than 0.1% of this figure.)
From my "limited" understanding of the DNA results, there
are two main Boyd
DNA groups - U198 and A3b2 - and some other smaller groups or
do not know how far back these go or where - what generation - there is a
We know from the "recorded" families that there are Cadet Branches of
Badenheath, Portincross, Pitcon, Bonshaw, Penkill and others, which stem
directly from the Kilmarnock family
It was general thought that Boyds first settled in Renfrewshire in the
1100's. It would appear that after the Battle of Largs in 1263, they may
have got an Estate of Noddsdale about 6 kms NE of Largs. However in 1306,
when Robert the Bruce gave lands to Sir Robert Boyd in 1306, he is described
as a small landowner from Cunninghame, Ayrshire. It would appear that
Robert the Bruce also gave Sir Robert Boyd some other Estates in Galloway at
the same time. While by 1467, when the first Lord Robert Boyd was Regent of
Scotland, there were estates listed in Fifeshire, Perthshire, and
Angusshire. However, I have yet to find out when these estates came to the
At present, I have some separate 720 Boyd family Chapters plus I have
another 1500 plus families in my trip folders that I have to get time to
write up into Family Chapters for the Clan Boyd Pyramid.
From my trips and having been given all these families, I am quite
able to put people in touch others researching that family. However, many
of these only go back to about 1700 AD and like many families "disappear" in
that great spaghetti bowl of the unknown before 1700 A. D.
It is with the help of the DNA tests that we (I understand) should be able
to link known families into this unknown area of our history and Clan
Pyramid to allow people to know where they need to research.
I only have about 5 people who can link themselves back to the Boyds in
Kilmarnock before 1700 A. D. so there are quite a lot of us still trying to
this connection prior to then.
If you read that you are linked to the "Earls of Arran", you know that is
incorrect, as there was only one Boyd Earl of Arran, Thomas Boyd. He had a
son James Boyd, 2nd Lord Boyd who was killed in 1484, so that if James IV
never had any male children, the Boyds could not become the Kings of
While if people say they stem from the 4th Earl of Kilmarnock again that is
unlikely as well. His fist son, William (1725- before 10 Feb. 1728); James
(1726-1778) who became the 15th Earl of Erroll in 1758; Charles (1728-1782)
who had a son Charles who died in 1782 at Up Park, Jamaica and the 4th son
and Twin to Charles is William (1728-1780) and died unmarried. I have seen
a number of families claiming a linkage to this second William Boyd, even
though Burke and other Histories say that he died unmarried.
So there will be times for members of both lists to remember to post to the
other Boyd list
Historical Committee, HBS
Sent: Wednesday, March 27, 2013 1:24 AM
To: davejboyd(a)ntlworld.com ; boyd-dna(a)rootsweb.com ; lboydaz(a)cox.net ;
Cc: tsboyd(a)bigpond.com ; pitadomino(a)gmail.com ; gailboyd(a)mac.com
Subject: Re: [BOYD] [BOYD-DNA] Boyd of Ballycastle and lost Cadet Branches
Unfortunately, I do not know very much about Scottish history or the various
clans. Most of time has been spent on my British lines because it seemed
too difficult to push on the Boyd history after first efforts, but I am
curious. We have always heard that my father's Boyd line was from Dean
Castle in Kilmarnock but came to the US via Antrim, Northern Ireland as I
recall. That is why I was interested in knowing if DNA studies have been
done on that/those area/areas.