Earl of Fife
Earldom of Fife
The Arms of the Realm and Ancient Local Principalities of Scotland 
The Mormaers of Fife were the highest ranking native nobles in Scotland. They frequently held the office of Justiciar of Scotia - highest brithem in the land - and enjoyed the right of crowning the Kings of Scots. The Mormaer's function, as with other medieval Scottish lordships, was kin-based. Hence, in 1385, the Earl of Fife, seen as the successor of the same lordship, is called capitalis legis de Clenmcduffe (=Lord of the Law of the Children of Macduff).
Chief (ceann) of Clann meic Duib 
The deputy or complementary position to mormaer or earl of Fife was leadership of Clan MacDuff (clann meic Duibh). There is little doubt that the style MacDuib, or Macduff, derives from the name of King Cináed III mac Duib, and ultimately from this man's father, King Dub (d. 966). Compare, for instance, that Domhnall, Lord of the Isles, signed a charter in 1408 as MacDomhnaill. The descendants of Cináed III adopted the name in the same way that the descendants of Brian Bóruma mac Cennétig called themselves Uí Briain, although it does seem that at least initially MacDuff was a style reserved for the man who held the Mormaership of Fife.
The chieftaincy of the clan was not always held by the mormaer, especially after the mormaerdom became subject to the laws of feudal primogeniture in the reign of Donnchadh I. For example, at the Battle of Falkirk, it is the head of the clan who led the men of Fife, rather than the Mormaer.
List of holders 
List of mormaers/earls of Fife 
- ? Giric mac Cináeda meic Duib
- Macduib; = Shakespeare's MacDuff (fl. 1057–1058)
- Causantín, Earl of Fife, (fl. 1095–1128)
- Gille Míchéil, Earl of Fife (1130–1133)
- Donnchadh I, Earl of Fife (1133–1154)
- Donnchadh II, Earl of Fife (1154–1204)
- Maol Choluim I, Earl of Fife (1204–1228)
- Maol Choluim II, Earl of Fife (1228–1266)
- Colbán, Earl of Fife, (1266–1270/2)
- Donnchadh III, Earl of Fife (1270/2–1288)
- Donnchadh IV, Earl of Fife (1288–1353), considered by King David II to have forfeited the earldom
- Sir William Ramsay of Colluthie, Earl of Fife (1358-c1360), created by King David II
- Isabella, Countess of Fife, (1361–1371), daughter of Donnchadh IV, was persuaded to resign the earldom to
- Robert Stewart, Earl of Fife (1371–1420)
- Murdoch Stewart, Duke of Albany, Earl of Fife (1420–1425)
Recreation of 1759 
- William Duff, 1st Earl Fife (c. 1696-1763)
- James Duff, 2nd Earl Fife (1729–1809)
- Alexander Duff, 3rd Earl Fife (1731–1811)
- James Duff, 4th Earl Fife (1776–1857)
- James Duff, 5th Earl Fife (1814–1879)
- Alexander William George Duff, 6th Earl Fife (1849–1912) (created Duke of Fife in 1889)
- See Clan Mcduff under Scottish Clans under "Clan".
- Bartholemew 1983. ISBN 0-7028-1709-0
- John Bannerman, "MacDuff of Fife" p. 24.
- Bannerman, John, "MacDuff of Fife," in A. Grant & K.Stringer (eds.) Medieval Scotland: Crown, Lordship and Community, Essays Presented to G.W.S. Barrow, (Edinburgh, 1993), pp. 20–38
- Barrow, G. W. S., Robert Bruce and the Community of the Realm of Scotland, (Edinburgh, 1988)
- Barrow, G.W.S. Earl's of Fife in the 12th Century, (Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, 1952–53), pp. 51–61.
- Lawrie, Sir Archibald C., Early Scottish Charters Prior to A.D. 1153, (Glasgow, 1905), no. XXXVI, pp. 28–31, pp. 283–84
- Roberts, John L., Lost Kingdoms: Celtic Scotland and the Middle Ages, (Edinburgh, 1997)
- Stirnet: "Fife1"
- University of Glasgow: Genealogical Chart of Early Gaelic Earls (link does not work correctly; after following this link, click on the Genealogical chart of mormaír (earls) of Fife, showing use of Gaelic names link)