I have been doing the Ancestry.com thing, and pushed a couple of lines back before 1500 before I decided that this was way too much work for very little return. Records in Europe - England, Sweden, Holland, and Ireland, at least - are not as good as American Puritan (and presumably, FFV) records. Not close. One is clicking merrily along from John Jr to John Sr and suddenly recognises that wait a minute, this woman is giving birth at fifty-seven years old. Or twelve. I know that longevity runs in families, but two generations in a row living to be more than 100 seems...unlikely. Especially as one seems to have moved from Somerset at 84 to Suffolk for no apparent reason. As I have discussed before, naming was very conservative in England for 650 years, with a huge percentage of girls being named Mary, Elizabeth, Anne, Margaret, Alice; boys John, William, Robert, Charles, Henry, Richard. Because of this, there are lots of people with the same name. I had a weird situation of a John Neat in my ancestry around 1800, who had a parallel with a John Neat in England only about 20 years earlier, both having married a woman named Mary, and so showing up as hints for possible ancestors. And don't even get me started on John Andersson, son of Anders Jonsson in Sweden.
Parenthetical: When one is not really caring about the right answer, only trying to get one's work recorded for posterity, good or bad, one goes quickly to losing one's temper and muttering "Well someone was his mother, and who the hell cares if it's Josefina or Margeta? They're dead! They don't care! We'll laugh about this in heaven if we all get there!" No, no, that was his first wife, which was also my sister's name, which is why you got confused. Let me introduce you to them, they're both lovely.
This is clearly bothering me too much. I got distracted in my introduction and haven't gotten back to the title topic since.
We all find nobility, though perhaps not royalty, for good reasons. They were better fed, had more descendants, and everyone kept better records about them. People with a little money had twice as many surviving children, and those with lots of money about five times as many. Yet because of primogeniture - which my oldest son keeps complaining is a conservative custom we should have retained - the title only went to one, or if deaths intervened, perhaps a second. Yet those other sons of Earls got to be at least Knights, and some title or other would descend for a few years. And those would remember. We're descended from Barons, doncha know. And if six people die before ye, ye'll be a baron yourself. So it's probably not a lie if your aunt insists you have Duchesses in your background. Of course you do. You have a thousand ancestors from the late 1600s, and a million from the 14th C. But they didn't keep track of the serfs and scullery-maids so well.
Next, cool ancestors exert a gravitational pull. People want to get there, and so lower their standards to make the claim. I hit one set of hints about a Puritan Elizabeth about 1630 and saw the repeated assertion that she was the daughter of King James I /VI and Anne of Denmark. The evidence seemed to be no more than that she was named Elizabeth, and they had a daughter named Elizabeth. Dude, I think we would have heard. If James I/VI had had a daughter who sympathised with the puritans enough to come to America when it was a dirty, death-filled primitive colony it would have been all over our history books. There would be not only statues, but towns named after her. Maybe a whole colony.
I feel the tug myself. I hit a Churchill in the ancestry and thought Oh! Winston! My wife reminded me that he was American on his mother's side, so any relationship would be...more remote. Yes. True.
I may do an entire post on the patent impossibilities that people put forward as reasonable on ancestry websites. If "researchers" only remembered Jamestown 1607 and Plimoth 1620 a lot of idiocy could be avoided. And that no Englishmen lived in North Dakota in 1726. Plus, enough biology to know what ages women could usually bear children. Or that they wouldn't normally have one six months after another. I admit, naming towns in New England and Virginia after familiar places in East Anglia or Wessex does confuse the issue. But you take on that responsibility when you type.
I hit something similar as my Massachusetts North Shore ancestors converged on 1700, or ahem, 1692. Everyone wanted to tie in to the Salem Witch Trials somehow. Or also, the Mayflower. Everyone want one of those. I've got lots, mostly the least-respectable Stephen Hopkins and his many descendants. The next ship, the Anne? Not so much. I probably have just as many from there, but people didn't work as hard to find those.