Four Kings of MannBetween 1320 and 1405 there were four different Kings of Mann. They were all able to rule the Island independently and therefore, although it is not mentioned anywhere, must have been approved by the Pope.
In the section on Mann there are diagrams which show that in one way and another they had all got a hereditory claim to the Island.
Does John Stanley the fourth candidate have similar claim?
From Ireland to WalesThis diagram is a essentially the same diagram as the one in the segment on Mann exept that the marriage of Ragnhild O’Olaf to Conan , Prince of Gwynedd and their descendants have been added.
Note that Ragnhild is descended from GormFlaith of Naas through her Manx husband and from Brian Boru through his other wife, Eachraith Nic Cearbhall.
The digram is marked up to show the descent from the Manx King to Griffith ap Madog but the descent from Brian is also important.
Wales to StanleyIn his book “The House of Stanley”, John Seacome hedges around the question of John Stanley’s Celtic ancestry. Presumably he thought no-one would be interested, or alternatively he, and presumably the Stanley family themselves, in the early18th century did not want to emphasise this aspect of John Stanley’s rise to prominence.
In the fourteenth century did John Stanley’s family know of this heritage? Thanks to computerised genealogy it is now relatively easy to discover these relationships, but in the fourteenth century only the main branches of families kept such records.
Who then would have been responsible for uncovering his heritage? It is certain that it was known at the time of John’s selection as the next King of Mann. This diagram shows that John was relatively closely related to both Lord James Audley and William de Montacute and both those families would have kept genealogical records.
In particular William Montacute was himself descended from the Viking Kings of Mann and his family records may well have included references to John.