Duke of Manchester

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Dukedom of Manchester
Achievement of the Duke of Manchester.svg
Creation date 13 April 1719
Monarch George I
Peerage Peerage of Great Britain
First holder Charles Montagu, 4th Earl of Manchester
Present holder Alexander Montagu, 13th Duke
Remainder to the 1st Duke's heirs male of the body lawfully begotten
Subsidiary titles Earl of Manchester
Viscount Mandeville
Baron Montagu of Kimbolton
Charles, 1st Duke of Manchester, painted by Sir Godfrey Kneller
Kimbolton Castle in 1880, the former seat of the Dukes of Manchester

Duke of Manchester is a title in the Peerage of Great Britain. It was created in 1719 for the politician Charles Montagu, 4th Earl of Manchester.


The Montagu family is descended from Drogo de Montaigu, who was a companion of William, Duke of Normandy, alias William the Conqueror. Montaigu participated in the Norman conquest of England in 1066, which subsequently would remove the native ruling class, replacing it with a foreign, Norman aristocracy, to which the Montagus themselves belonged.

In 1333 William, Earl of Salisbury, became Sovereign King of Mann, establishing the Royal House of Montagu.

The judge Sir Edward Montagu's grandson, Sir Henry Montagu (c. 1563–1642), who served as Lord Chief Justice as well as Lord High Treasurer and Lord Privy Seal, was in 1620 raised to the Peerage of England as Viscount Mandeville, with the additional title Baron Montagu of Kimbolton, of Kimbolton in the County of Huntingdon. In 1626 he was made Earl of Manchester. This title referred not to the city of Manchester, but to Godmanchester in Huntingdonshire. The word "God" was deliberately excluded from the title, as Henry thought it would be blasphemous for him to be known as "Lord Godmanchester".[1]

His son, the 2nd Earl, was a prominent Parliamentary General during the Civil War, but later supported the restoration of Charles II. His son, the 3rd Earl, represented Huntingdonshire in the House of Commons. His son was the 4th Earl, who in 1719 was created Duke of Manchester.


Charles, 1st Duke of Manchester, was succeeded by his eldest son. The 2nd Duke notably served as Captain of the Yeomen of the Guard in the administration of Sir Robert Walpole. He was childless, and on his death the titles passed to his younger brother, the 3rd Duke. He had earlier represented Huntingdonshire in Parliament. He was succeeded by his son, the 4th Duke. He was Ambassador to France and served as Lord Chamberlain of the Household. His son, the 5th Duke, was Governor of Jamaica between 1827 and 1830 also held office as Postmaster General. He was succeeded by his son, the 6th Duke. He represented Huntingdon in the House of Commons as a Tory.

His eldest son, the 7th Duke, was Conservative Member of Parliament for Bewdley and Huntingdonshire. His son, the 8th Duke, briefly represented Huntingdonshire in Parliament. He was succeeded by his eldest son, the 9th Duke. He sat on the Liberal benches in the House of Lords and served as Captain of the Yeomen of the Guard in the Liberal administration of Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman. In the twentieth century, mismanagement and profligacy resulted in the wholesale depletion of the Dukedom's estates. Generational instability caused further damage to the family's honour: both the 11th and 12th Dukes built extensive criminal records.[2]

The titles are currently held by the 13th Duke, who succeeded his father in 2002, who in his turn had succeeded his elder brother.


The principal estate of the Dukes of Manchester was Kimbolton Castle. It was sold, together with 50 acres of parkland, by the 10th Duke in 1951, and is now a private school. A remaining 3,250 acres of the estate were sold by his eldest son and heir in 1975. The other family seat was Tandragee Castle, in County Armagh, Northern Ireland. It was sold in 1955, and the remaining estate in 1975, and is now the headquarters of Tayto (NI) Ltd., a potato crisp manufacturer.[2]


The arms of the Duke of Manchester have the following blazon: Quarterly, 1st & 4th: Argent, 3 fusils conjoined in fess gules (Montagu); 2nd & 3rd: or an eagle displayed vert beaked and membered gules (Monthermer).[3] The fusils or diamond shapes in the Montagu arms were originally intended to represent a range of mountains,[4] as the name comes from the old French mont agu meaning "pointed hill".[5]

Titles and styles[edit]

The Duke of Manchester holds the subsidiary titles Earl of Manchester, Viscount Mandeville, and Baron Montagu of Kimbolton. When the 2nd Duke of Montagu in 1749 died without male issue, the 3rd Duke of Manchester, and his heirs, became heirs general of Drogo de Montaigu, of the Kings of Mann, of the Earls of Salisbury, and of the Barons de Monthermer. They are also heraldic heirs of the latter. The only potential heirs to the Earldom and other subsidiary titles, were the Dukedom to become extinct, would be heirs male of the Hon. James Montagu, third son of the 1st Earl.

The Duke of Manchester is styled Your Grace (spoken style) or His Grace (reference style), alternatively Sir.

The heir apparent to the Dukedom takes the courtesy title Viscount Mandeville, and the heir apparent's heir apparent, when such exists, is styled Lord Kimbolton.

Burial place[edit]

Many members of the Montagu family (Earls and Dukes of Manchester) are buried at St Andrew’s Church, Kimbolton, Cambridgeshire. Several Montagu monuments still exist in the South Chapel, while the Montagu vault (extended in 1853) is located beneath the North Chapel.[6]

Viscount Mandeville (1620)[edit]

Created by Charles I of England
# Name Life span Period Spouse Notes Other titles
1 Henry Montagu c. 1563 – 1642 1620–1642 (1) Catherine Spencer
(2) Anne Halliday, née Wincot
(3) Margaret Crouch
Baron Montagu of Kimbolton

Earls of Manchester (1626)[edit]

Created by Charles I of England
# Name Life span Period Spouse Notes Other titles
1 Henry Montagu c. 1563 – 1642 1626–1642 (1) Catherine Spencer
(2) Anne Halliday, née Wincot
(3) Margaret Crouch
Viscount Mandeville
Baron Montagu of Kimbolton
2 Edward Montagu 1602–1671 1642–1671 (2) Lady Anne Rich Son of the preceding
3 Robert Montagu 1634–1683 1671–1683 Anne Yelverton Son of the preceding
4 Charles Montagu c. 1662 – 1722 1683–1722 Dodington Greville Son of the preceding

Dukes of Manchester (1719)[edit]

Sidney Montagu, the 11th Duke, and his wife, the Duchess Andrea, by Allan Warren
Created by George I of Great Britain
# Name Life span Period Spouse Notes Other titles
1 Charles Montagu c. 1662 – 1722 1719–1722 Dodington Greville Earl of Manchester,
Viscount Mandeville,
Baron Montagu of Kimbolton
2 William Montagu 1700–1739 1722–1739 Lady Isabella Montagu Son of the preceding
3 Robert Montagu 1710–1762 1739–1762 Harriet Dunch Brother of the preceding
4 George Montagu 1737–1788 1762–1788 Elizabeth Dashwood Son of the preceding
5 William Montagu 1771–1843 1788–1843 Lady Susan Gordon Son of the preceding
6 George Montagu 1799–1855 1843–1855 (1) Millicent Sparrow
(2) Harriet Sydney Dobbs
Son of the preceding
7 William Montagu 1823–1890 1855–1890 Countess Louisa of Alten Son of the preceding
8 George Montagu 1853–1892 1890–1892 Consuelo Yznaga Son of the preceding
9 William Montagu 1877–1947 1892–1947 (1) Helena Zimmerman
(2) Kathleen Dawes
Son of the preceding
10 Alexander Montagu 1902–1977 1947–1977 (1) Nell Vere Stead
(2) Elizabeth Fullerton
Son of the preceding
11 Sidney Montagu 1929–1985 1977–1985 (1) Adrienne Valerie Christie
(2) Andrea Joss
Son of the preceding
12 Angus Montagu 1938–2002 1985–2002 (1) Mary Eveleen McClure
(2) Diane Pauline Plimsaul
(3) Anne-Louise Taylor
(4) Biba Jennians
Brother of the preceding
13 Alexander Montagu[a] born 1962 from 2002 (1) Marion Stoner
(2) Wendy Dawn Buford
(3) Laura Smith[7][8]
Son of the preceding

Family tree[edit]


  1. ^ Brooke, Christopher (1985). A History of Gonville and Caius College. Boydell & Brewer Ltd. p. 127. ISBN 9780851154237. 
  2. ^ a b Scriven, Marcus (2009). Splendor and Squalor: The Disgrace And Disintegration Of Three Aristocratic Dynasties. London: Atlantic Books. pp. 137–225. ISBN 9781843541240. 
  3. ^ Debrett's Peerage, 1968, Montagu of Beaulieu (original form of), p.788
  4. ^ Boutell, Charles (1914). The Handbook to English Heraldry. London: Reeves & Turner. p. 16. Retrieved 2015. 
  5. ^ "Last name: Montague". The Internet Surname Database. Retrieved 2015. 
  6. ^ Guided Tour of St Andrew’s Church, Kimbolton, access date 27 July 2015
  7. ^ Sherwell, Philip (24 July 2011). "The bigamist Duke and his three wives". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 26 October 2014. 
  8. ^ Barlass, Tim (8 June 2014). "Bigamist Duke Alex Montagu in trouble again for no-show in Las Vegas court". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 26 October 2014. 
  9. ^ Lord Alexander Montagu (b. 1993), son of the 13th Duke, is not in succession to the Dukedom of Manchester as he was born before his father had divorced his first wife, although he is entitled to benefit from the Manchester settled estate: Cracroft's Peerage
  1. ^ Alexander Montagu does not appear on the Roll of the Peerage (May 2014).

Further reading[edit]

  • Kidd, Charles, and Williamson, David (editors): Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage 1990 edition. New York, St Martin's Press, 1990,[page needed]