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London, Feb. 26: A new book 'The Son Also Rises,' by academic Gregory Clark has suggested that our chances of getting on in life are largely down to what our family did 300 years ago.

In contrast to estimates, which suggest that past prosperity or poverty could be erased in three to four generations, Clark reckons it takes 10 to 15.

Clark came to the conclusion by using surnames to track changes in familial wealth, the Independent reported.

He picked out the family names, which dominated elite positions in historical records such as the Doomsday Book and the Royal Society records and then found how long it took for those surnames to lose their wealth-predicting ability.

Clark suggests that mobility in feudal England was not much different to today.

What is perhaps the most surprising feature of the research was that the ancestral shadow appeared to hang over all the countries surveyed, without there being any exception. (ANI)

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