data integrity

It appears that I precipitated the exposure of a multiple hoaxer on Wikipedia.

In Line of succession to the British Throne I noticed that “The Earl of Amersham” had been inserted and, four minutes later, removed. Curious, I looked up Earl of Amersham and found it fishy on two points: the title was said to be created in 1964 (since 1960 only three non-royal Brits have been made peers other than life barons) and the genuine but extinct title Earl Roberts was attributed to Amersham’s son.

I tagged Earl of Amersham as a likely hoax, and within hours . . . well, you can read for yourself.

Why (you may ask) does an American anarchist know enough about British aristocracy to spot the hoax? I’ve been fascinated by heraldry since I found Moncreiffe & Pottinger’s Simple Heraldry Cheerfully Illustrated in my hi-skool’s library circa 1974; and one can’t study heraldry without picking up some knowledge of dynasties and such.

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