Earl (/ɜːrl, ɜːrəl/) is a rank of the nobility in the United Kingdom. The title originates in the Old English word eorl, meaning “a man of noble birth or rank”. The word is cognate with the Scandinavian form jarl, and meant “chieftain”, particularly a chieftain set to rule a territory in a king’s stead.
What rank is an earl in England?
EARL. Earl is the third rank of the Peerage, standing above the ranks of viscount and baron, but below duke and marquess. Before King Canute (c. 994-1035) an ‘ealdorman’ administered a shire or province for the king.
How do you become an earl in UK?
5. How does one become an earl? Unlike others, earl titles are handed down from father to son and cannot be bestowed upon an individual. So, the only way to really become an earl is to be passed the title from one generation to the next.
Is an earl higher than a prince?
It’s comprised of various noble ranks, forming what is known as the British honours system. The five possible titles for men, ranked from highest to lowest, are: duke, marquess, earl, viscount, and baron.
Is an earl a high rank?
Earl is the oldest title and rank of English nobles, and it was also the highest, until 1337, when Edward the Black Prince was created duke of Cornwall by Edward III. It now stands third in precedence, between marquess (1385) and viscount (1440).
Can an earl become king?
If they are born as an earl, duke or any other royal status, you will need to marry into the royal family or create a new character and try again. Similarly, you will need to wait until your character inherits the throne before you officially become king or queen.
Is an earl royalty?
Earls originally functioned essentially as royal governors. Though the title of “Earl” was nominally equal to the continental “Duke”, unlike such dukes, earls were not de facto rulers in their own right.
What is a count’s wife called?
Countess: Is the female equivalent of an earl and a count. This title can be used by an unmarried woman in her own right, or by the wife of a man who is an earl or a count.
Are there still dukes and earls in England?
There are only 24 non-Royal Dukes (22 of whom own land) and 34 Marquesses (14 of whom own land in England). But according to Debrett’s, there are currently 191 Earls, 115 Viscounts, and 435 Barons – some 800 peers in total.
What is the wife of an earl called?
They are Dukes, Marquesses, Earls, Viscounts and Barons. An Earl is the third highest grade of the peerage. A wife of an Earl is styled Countess.
What is an earl in British royalty?
According to Debrett’s, “Earl is the third rank of the Peerage, standing above the ranks of viscount and baron, but below duke and marquess.” So, if you’re looking to marry an eligible royal, an earl might be your best pretty solid bet – although ranking-wise a duke or marquess would be more impressive.
Why is Prince Edward only an earl and not a duke?
On his wedding day, Prince Edward was created Earl of Wessex, with the subsidiary title of Viscount Severn (derived from the Welsh roots of the Countess’s family), breaking from a tradition whereby sons of the sovereign were created royal dukes.
What are the ranks in British royalty?
peerage, Body of peers or titled nobility in Britain. The five ranks, in descending order, are duke, marquess, earl (see count), viscount, and baron.
How many British dukes are there?
There are 30 Dukes in the UK today. Five of these are ceremonial titles for members of the Royal family, conferring no wealth or estates. The one other Royal Duke who is a significant landowner is Prince Charles, Duke of Cornwall, whose 135,000-acre estate I’ve written about elsewhere.
What is the daughter of an earl called?
The honorific prefix of “Lady” is used for the daughters of dukes, marquesses, and earls. The courtesy title is added before the person’s given name, as in the example Lady Diana Spencer.
What is an earl in Vikings?
An earl or jarl is a member of the nobility among some of the early Norsemen, though they were properly pronounced as jarl. The earl/jarl is usually seen as a chieftain of a particular territory.