Johnny Knoxville discovers his incestuous lineage

Actor Johnny Knoxville has revealed the findings of an in-depth examination of his ancestry. He hired a top U.S. genealogist to explore his roots, who then informed Knoxville that he comes from an incestuous family. Knoxville recounted his conversation with the genealogist. “He calls me in… and he goes, ‘Sit down, you know in these rural mountain regions you come from, no one ever goes into the community and no one ever leaves the community… so it’s not uncommon that there’s in-breeding in those communities.’ I said, ‘Is there in-breeding in my family?’ and he says, ‘A significant amount.'” Knoxville took the news in good humor. “I was so happy. He thought he was giving me a really horrible thing and I had tears rolling down my face.” Knoxville can currently be seen in the hidden-camera comedy Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa. ~Raj-Kabir Birk

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Comments & Discussion

  1. Kags • November 1, 2013 @ 5:41 PM

    Thats sick and twisted. Theres no humor in finding out something like that. Hes sick to think its no big deal

  2. Keith Pullman • November 3, 2013 @ 11:16 AM

    Any decent genealogist knows we all have a lot of “inbreeding” in our ancestry.

    With each previous generation you trace back, the maximum possible number of your genetic ancestors doubles. You can have 2 parents, up to 4 grandparents, up to 8 great-grandparents, up to 16 great-great-grandparents, etc.

    On average, there are about four generations per century. For people born in the year 2000, their 8 great-great-grandparents were probably born around 1900. Sometime around 1800 their great-great-great-great-great-great-grandparents were born (there may be up to 128 of them). About 29 generations back, or roughly around the time of 1250-1300, the total number of your possible ancestors for that generation equals or exceeds the total population of the planet, which was about 500 million people.

    What gives? Well, first of all, if all 500 million of those people were your ancestors, they would also be the ancestors of all of the rest of us, too.

    Secondly, you probably dont have every person alive back then as your ancestor. There wasnt a lot of interracial or intercultural parenting going on back then. People were more isolated, more people lived in rural countrysides rather than dense urban areas, and people were not nearly as geographically or socially mobile as they are today. It was very common for a person to be born in and to die in the the same village or town, having lived all of her or his life there.

    This means that for many, many, many, many generations, there was a lot of what most people would call today inbreeding. If your spouse wasnt your first cousin, your spouse was likely a second or third cousin, or a second cousin-once removed, or even your double-cousin, etc. aND even if they werent marrying them, people were having children with siblings, aunts or uncles, etc. (Even if not having children together, what do you think went on, given that pubescent teens, like most children then, were usually sharing a bedroom?) Not only did these things not destroy humanity, but in Europe, the Renaissance was birthed in these conditions.

    Coming back to around 1800, very few people are likely to have 128 great-great-great-great-great-great-grandparents, just like very few of those people in 1800 had 128 of them in 1600. Because chances are, some of your recent ancestors were cousins, if not closer. If you marry your first cousin, you have no more than six genetic grandparents between you, instead of eight. If your parents are first cousins, you have six great-grandparents instead of eight.

    If inbreeding was as detrimental as common misconception says, none of us would be here.

  3. Checkit • November 4, 2013 @ 6:18 PM

    He took it in good humour, he’s not laughing at a father who keeps his kid locked up and rapes them. He’s laughing at his family history that could have happened. Maybe confirming something he’s always joked about? Maybe this was a false story to get us laughing. Maybe that’s and explaination why he abuses himself like he does ha ha.

  4. Martin • July 30, 2016 @ 12:03 PM

    Well obviously it isnt a big deal.
    Actually theres isnt much evidence for inbreeding even being bad.
    Inbred populations consist of individuals with similar characteristics. That also means they are similar in their hereditary diseases, which means you get a spike in specific hereditary diseases. It doesnt mean that you get more hereditary diseases overall.
    You just get a different distribution.

  5. Arschfotze • December 2, 2016 @ 8:37 PM

    If the line of inbreeding is uninterrupted and becomes the trade mark of the family over several generations (like citizens of certain countries do), you are doomed if this is your family. Better not procreate then.

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