USA and aristocracy

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,516
As compared to Britain, there is a much smaller percentage that go to private schools, it is less clear that whether you go to private schools in based on social class, and which school you go to is less based on social class. There are also mediocre private schools that are worse than public schools in nice areas.The upper level private schools are really good and have mostly students from a certain background.

Privilege is also more based on money rather than class in the US. There are less issues that you can't do things because you are not from the right class. There are less clear class lines among the middle class.

There are probably more quasi-aristocratic organizations and so on than in Europe, because there is not formal nobility in British America and there never has been.

There was formal Dutch nobility in New York state, and sort of Spanish nobility in Spanish territory. In colonial times Pennsylvania and Maryland had hereditary governors who were members of the English or Irish House of Lords. However, in general, there was not formal aristocracy in colonial times. Washington and Jefferson, etc were considered landed gentry. There land and slaves were property.
 

M9Powell

Ad Honorem
Oct 2014
4,456
appalacian Mtns
If you mean an aristocracy with actual or nominal governing powers, no. I don't believe there ever has been. But if you are asking if there are Americans who use titles acquired almost always by marriage, yes. The society pages are filled with the doings of Count such-and-such and Princess so-and-so. As a genealogist, I can tell you that royal descent is a big thing--and a real money maker for the genealogical authors who turn out book after book of genealogies that track Joe Blow (ordinary citizen) to Charlemagne. I volunteer at our local genealogical library and, almost every week, someone comes in who is not really interested in his family history--other than in finding proof that he is a descendant of royalty. There are organizations such as The Order of Charlemagne and the Augustan Society that are are deadly serious. The Plantaganets are especially popular.

Then there's a whole crowd of aristocratic-ish groups: Sons (and Daughters) of the American Revolution, Colonial Dames, Mayflower Society, First Families of Virginia, the Holland Society, etc. None of these confer more than honor and/or snob appeal. There's an entire book out that simply lists all these birth-heritage groups.

There is a lot of prestige in California given to descendants of the Mexican dons and, until relatively recently, they still used the prefaces of Don/Dona (sorry, I can't make a ~ over the "n").

Certainly there are some families in which there seems to be someone of note generation after generation. But I suspect that this kind of lineage is more a matter of good educations and knowing the right people.

And Americans track these types: social registers and blue books come out on a regular basis. Most of the people in these books are there because they were born in or married in. Every once in a while someone of astounding wealth does become enrolled--but everyone tut-tuts about "new money".

So because I'm descended from Irish & Dal Riadh royalty I'm entitled too a title? Hogwash. It don't mean $#@t in America. The place was founded on the principle of we've had enough of this royalty crap.
 
Apr 2010
1,048
evergreen state, USA
I have a lot of aristocrats in my deep family tree. But I was accidentally born into a poor family who regreted not aborting me. Only by my intrepid research did I finally uncover my deep illustrious family tree. Unfortunately, my illustrious ancestors were Plantagenets, and not more recent dynasties. So I apparently can't claim a portion of royal wealth, ha ha.
 
Jun 2017
626
maine
So because I'm descended from Irish & Dal Riadh royalty I'm entitled too a title? Hogwash. It don't mean $#@t in America. The place was founded on the principle of we've had enough of this royalty crap.
I didn't say that any of this entitled anyone to anything but snob appeal--simply that it exists. I am sorry that you are so offended because it certainly was not my intention.
 

Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,171
US
About 6.5% of people go to private school in the UK.

10% of people do in the USA.
I agree with you that going to a private school is not necessarily an indicator of privilege. I know many faith based schools, which are considered private, who offer scholarships to the disadvantaged so they can attend. There are a few "elite" private schools in my area. They are typically located in the same area as the public schools that are rated by those who consider such things as the "top" public schools in the state. So, there isn't much of a drop off, regardless.
 

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,516
About 6.5% of people go to private school in the UK.

10% of people do in the USA.
About 2.5% go to nonreligous private schools in the US. Catholic and fundamentalist schools etc. are mostly not that could schools and are not socially exclusive at all.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Rodger

Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,171
US
About 2.5% go to nonreligous private schools in the US. Catholic and fundamentalist schools etc. are mostly not that could schools and are not socially exclusive at all.
Yes. This is a good way to state the point I was trying to make. Few go to socially exclusive schools. So, the term "private" school probably does not portray and reflect the same as many might think.
 

Naomasa298

Forum Staff
Apr 2010
35,487
T'Republic of Yorkshire
Yes. This is a good way to state the point I was trying to make. Few go to socially exclusive schools. So, the term "private" school probably does not portray and reflect the same as many might think.
It's exactly the same situation in Britain/ Only a few people go to tje elite, socially exclusive schools.

They are over represented in certain sectors, such as politics.

It's what we call the "old boys' network".

I went to the same school as the Emir of Qatar. I'm still waiting for the phone call...
 
  • Like
Reactions: Rodger