Earl of Arundel

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Family coat of arms of the d'Aubigny, Earls of Arundel (since then also part of the coat of arms of the Earls of Arundel from the houses of FitzAlan and Howard)

Earl of Arundel is a hereditary British title in the Peerage of England . The title is the oldest earliest dignity of the Peerage of England and the oldest remaining title in the United Kingdom .


In December 1067 William the Conqueror enfeoffed his Norman follower and relative Roger II. De Montgomerie , Lord of Bellême , from the noble family Montgommery with the Honor of Arundel , with the condition that a castle be built there. He had the originally wooden motten castle Arundel Castle built on the river Arun , which gives it its name . In 1074 he was also given the title of Earl of Shrewsbury . His son, the 3rd Earl , was exiled in 1102, his lands confiscated by the Crown and his titles revoked after he rose up against King Henry I in 1101 and joined the invasion of Duke Roberts II of Normandy . Montgomery and his two sons are often not counted as earls, but merely as the first owners of the county.

After King Heinrich's death in 1135, his widow Adelheid von Löwen married the courtier Sir William d'Aubigny from the Norman noble family Aubigny in 1138 . He gained control of the Honor of Arundel with Arundel Castle through marriage. King Stephen first awarded him the title of Earl of Lincoln in 1139 . This was in fact lost to him when Lincoln Castle was conquered during the Civil War in 1140 and the title was reassigned to William de Roumare around 1141 . King Stephan then awarded him the title of Earl of Arundel in 1141 as compensation . With the death of his great-grandson, the 5th Earl, the Aubigny family died out in the male line. Arundel Castle fell through his sister Isabel d'Aubigny to her son John FitzAlan from the originally Breton noble family FitzAlan , to which the Scottish and later British royal family Stuart can be traced back. This was followed by his son, grandson and great grandson as Lord of Arundel Castle. The latter, Richard FitzAlan , was appointed as Earl of Arundel in the royal parliament in 1289 by King Edward I by Writ of Summons , thereby creating the new title. In 1405 the 13th Earl inherited from his mother the subordinate title of 3rd Baron Maltravers .

King Henry VI. 1433 expressly confirmed the unique tradition that the title of Earl of Arundel as a title ("earldom by tenure") always belongs to the respective owner of Arundel Castle. This retrospectively established that the title de iure, awarded by King Stephen in 1141, has existed since 1138 and has been due in an unbroken line to the lords of the castle from the houses of Aubigny and FitzAlan, even if not all of them claimed and carried the title de facto . The award of King Edward I in 1289 is generally regarded as a parallel award of the title with the usual inheritance only to legitimate male descendants and counted separately.

The last Earl of the FitzAlan family, Henry FitzAlan, 19th and 12th Earl of Arundel , was implicated in the Ridolfi Conspiracy to bring Mary Queen of Scots to the English throne, which earned the Earl lifelong house arrest. When he died in 1580 without leaving any sons, the earl title of 1289 expired, Arundel Castle and the earl title of 1138 fell to the son of his daughter Mary, who died in 1557, Philip Howard of the Howard family , as the 20th earl. His father Thomas Howard, 4th Duke of Norfolk, was executed for treason in 1572 and his title was revoked. Philip Howard also participated in a conspiracy against Queen Elizabeth I and was stripped of his earl title in 1589. His son Thomas Howard achieved in 1604 under King James I the restoration of the title of 21st Earl of Arundel and the title of 4th Earl of Surrey and 11th Baron Maltravers. In 1627, the Act of Parliament gave him the barony of FitzAlan, Clun and Oswaldestre , and was permanently connected to the Earldom of Arundel. His great-grandson, the 23rd Earl of Arundel , succeeded in 1660 that the title of 5th Duke of Norfolk was restored for him. The earl title has since been a subordinate title of the respective Dukes of Norfolk. The eldest son of the respective duke carries the courtesy title Earl of Arundel and Surrey as his probable title heir ( Heir apparent ) .

List of the Earls of Arundel

Lords (Earls?) Of Arundel (1067)

Earls of Arundel, first bestowal (1138/1141)

Current Heir Apparent is the son of the current title holder Henry Fitzalan-Howard, Earl of Arundel and Surrey (* 1987).

Earls of Arundel, second bestowal (1289)

See also


  1. The document situation creates confusion here, since Richard FitzAlan is named Earl of Sussex instead of Earl of Arundel in the Writ of Summons of 1289 . But since the mighty magnate John de Warenne, 6th Earl of Surrey , Earl of Sussex is mentioned in Writs of Summons from the same period, FitzAlan is probably a typo. In further Writs of Summons from the years 1291/92 and 1295, Richard FitzAlan is accordingly expressly called to Parliament as Earl of Arundel .


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