Camelot International > Royal Palace

The Peerage

The Peerage has grown out of the structure established in the Dark Ages and used by the King to administer and defend his territory. When Duke William of Normandy conquered England in 1066, he entered the history books as perhaps one of our most famous Dukes. He introduced several titles that are now an established part of the peerage. A Duke ranks immediately below a Prince and with is almost always conferred upon Royalty. In 1488, Sir William de la Pole, Marquess of Suffolk, was created Duke of Suffolk and became the first person who was not a member of the Royal family to receive a dukedom. The last non-Royal Dukes were those of Westminster (1874) and Fife (1900).

Below a Duke is a Marquess. In Norman Britain the title was given to an Earl or Baron responsible for guarding the "marches" (or border lands) of Wales and Scotland.

The title Earl was well established in Saxon England as the highest rank of nobility and given to the king's representative in charge of an earldom or shire. It became a hereditary title under the Normans for those governing a county. The Earl's deputy was called a Viscount. Barons, or Lords, were strictly a Norman import and held land directly from the King in exchange for military service.

Since the introduction of the Life Peerage Act in 1958 very few hereditary peers have been created: Viscount Whitelaw and Viscount Tonypandy in 1983 and Macmillan, Earl of Stockton in 1984.

All designs © Knight International Bulgarian Property Specialist 2001 - 2007