Daniel Radcliffe

Radcliffe in 2005, BMCL / Shutterstock.com

Birth Name: Daniel Jacob Radcliffe

Place of Birth: Fulham, Hammersmith, London, England, U.K.

Date of Birth: 23 July, 1989

*father – Northern Irish, Irish
*mother – Ashkenazi Jewish

Daniel Radcliffe is a British actor. He is known for playing Harry Potter in the feature films based on the book series. Among his other roles are The Tailor of Panama, December Boys, The Woman in Black, Kill Your Darlings, Horns, The F Word, Victor Frankenstein, Swiss Army Man, Now You See Me 2, Imperium, Jungle, Beast of Burden, Guns Akimbo, Escape from Pretoria, The Lost City, and Weird: The Al Yankovic Story, and television’s David Copperfield (1999), My Boy Jack, A Young Doctor’s Notebook, The Gamechangers, and Miracle Workers. He has also used the pen name Jacob Gershon, his maternal grandmother’s original family name.

Daniel is the son of Alan Radcliffe (Alan George Radcliffe), a literary agent, and Marcia Gresham (previously Marcia Gresham Jacobson), a casting agent. He has a son with his partner, American actress Erin Darke.

Daniel’s father is from Northern Ireland, and was raised Protestant. He has Northern Irish and Irish ancestry; given the English surname Radcliffe, Daniel’s father likely also has English roots. Daniel has family in County Down.

Daniel’s mother was born in South Africa, to Ashkenazi Jewish parents (their families were originally from Lithuania, Poland, and Russia). Daniel’s maternal grandfather was from South Africa and Daniel’s maternal grandmother was born in England.

Daniel is an atheist, and has repeatedly stated that he self-identifies as Jewish. For example, when asked by The Daily Beast if he considers himself Jewish, he stated:

Absolutely. I really do. My dad is Northern Irish and my mum is Jewish. That’s working blood. Though I am not religious in the least, I am very proud to be Jewish.

Daniel’s paternal grandfather was Edward “Teddy” Radcliffe (the son of George Edward Radcliffe and Dora Gertrude Watt). George was born in Banbridge, Co. Down, the son of Edward Radcliffe and Margaret Anne Bell.

Daniel’s paternal grandmother was named Elsie May Crowther (who likely was the daughter of Florence McDowell). Florence was the daughter of Tommy McDowell and Elizabeth.

Daniel’s maternal grandfather was Wilfred Jacobson (the son of Saul Harry Jacobson and Harriette Harris). Wilfred was from Johannesburg, South Africa. Saul was a Lithuanian Jewish immigrant. Harriette was born in London, to a Jewish family.

Daniel’s maternal grandmother is Muriel Jean Patricia Gresham (born Gershon; the daughter of Samuel “Sam” Gershon and Rachel/Raie Diana Jacobs). Muriel was born in Rochford, Essex, England. Samuel was born in Hackney, London, England, and was the son of Louis Gershon, who was born in Wreschen, now Września, Posen, Germany, now Poland; and of Jessie Greenwall/Lipman, who was born in Kalisz/Kalisch, Wielkopolskie, Poland. The couple had lived in South Africa. Daniel’s great-grandmother Rachel was also born in London, to Maurice Jacobs (the son of Yehuda Leib/Louis Krengel and Bessie Sara Marks) and Julia Jacobs or Millie Cohen (the daughter of Maurice Cohen).

Sources: Information about Daniel’s appearance on Who Do You Think You Are?, 2019 – https://www.thegenealogist.co.uk

Genealogies of Daniel Radcliffe – http://bygonesandbyways.blogspot.ca

Death record of Daniel’s maternal great-grandmother, Harriette (Harris) Jacobson – https://www.familysearch.org


Curious about ethnicity

25 Responses

  1. jackson9 says:

    Daniel Radcliffe’s great-grandmother and Saul Harry Jacobson’s spouse was Harriette Harris.
    Source: familysearch.org (Saul Harry Jacobson’s records)

  2. jackson9 says:

    Although Daniel Radcliffe’s fathers mainly Protestant/Northern Irish he has some Irish Catholic in him.
    Paternal grandfathers parents: George Edward Radcliffe (1900) and Dora Gertrude Watt (1893). George was the son of Edward Radcliffe and Margaret Anne Bell. Edward was the son of William Radcliffe (1826) and Sarah Jane Arlow (1828). William was the son of John Radcliffe and Mary Cassidy (1803-1879). in County Down, Northern Ireland. Even though Mary was from Northern Ireland, she has a very Irish surname (Cassidy) and from the records I found I believe she was Catholic. Other lineage of Radcliffe’s father were ethnically Irish as well.

  3. jackson9 says:

    maternal grandfather: Wilfred Jacboson (1919-1994) was the son of more specifically Saul Harry Jacobson (1881-March 26,1945) who died in Johannesburg, South Africa.
    source: Saul Harry Jacobson in the JewishGen online Worldwide Burial Registry.

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