Earl of Arran

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James Hamilton, 2nd Earl of Arran

Earl of Arran is a title in both the Peerage of Scotland and the Peerage of Ireland. The two titles refer to different places: the Isle of Arran in Scotland, and the Aran Islands in Ireland. The Earl of Arran (Scotland) is a subsidiary title of the Duke of Hamilton, whereas the Earl of Arran (Ireland) is a separate title held by the Gore family. The Earl of Arran is also a title owned by the Blackwood-Davidson family who own the Isle of Arran. The title exists as a territorial earldom which has been held by the family since 1503.

Scottish creations[edit]

James Hamilton, 4th Earl of Arran

The title was first created in the Peerage of Scotland in 1467 for Thomas Boyd, who was later attainted for treason. The next creation was in 1503 for James Hamilton, 2nd Lord Hamilton. His grandson was declared insane in 1562 and the title passed to the king's favourite Captain James Stewart in 1581. In 1609, the second Marquess of Hamilton inherited the earldom. In 1643, the third Marquess was made Duke of Hamilton and received a second grant of the earldom of Arran. At the death of the second Duke, the 1503 earldom became dormant (i.e., it was unclaimed), while the 1643 earldom descended along with the dukedom, with which it is still united. For more information on these creations, see the Duke of Hamilton.

Earls of Arran, first creation (1467)[edit]

Earls of Arran, second and third creations (1503, 1643)[edit]

Irish creations[edit]

Charles Butler, 1st Earl of Arran.

The first Irish creation came in 1662 when Lord Richard Butler, younger son of James Butler, 1st Duke of Ormonde, was created Baron Butler of Cloughgrenan, Viscount Tullough and Earl of Arran. However, the titles became extinct on his death in 1686 as he left no heirs. The next creation came in 1693 for his nephew Charles Butler (who was also created Baron Butler of Cloughgrenan and Viscount Tullough). These titles became extinct on his death in 1758.

The final creation in the Peerage of Ireland came in 1762, when Sir Arthur Gore, 3rd Baronet, was created Earl of Arran, of the Arran Islands in the County of Galway. He had previously represented Donegal Borough in the Irish House of Commons and had already been created Viscount Sudley, of Castle Gore in the County of Mayo, in 1758, and Baron Saunders, of Deeps in the County of Wexford in 1758, in the Peerage of Ireland. He was succeeded by his son, the second Earl. He sat as a member of the Irish Parliament for Donegal Borough and was one of the original sixteen Knights of the Order of St Patrick. Lord Arran had sixteen children, and one of his daughters was Cecilia Underwood, Duchess of Inverness.

He was succeeded by his eldest son, the third Earl. He represented Baltimore and County Donegal in the British House of Commons. He was childless and was succeeded by his nephew, the fourth Earl. He was the son of Colonel the Hon. William John Gore. Lord Arran was a diplomat. His son, the fifth Earl, was also in the Diplomatic Service. In 1884 he was created Baron Sudley, of Castle Gore in the County of Mayo, in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. This peerage gave the earls an automatic seat in the House of Lords.

His son, the sixth Earl, was a soldier and also served as Lord Lieutenant of County Donegal. As of 2010 the titles are held by his grandson, the ninth Earl, who succeeded his father in 1983 (who in his turn had succeeded his elder brother in 1958). Lord Arran is a Conservative politician and one of the ninety elected hereditary peers that remain in the House of Lords after the passing of the House of Lords Act 1999. He is also in remainder to the Gore Baronetcy of Magherabegg (see below).

The Baronetcy, of Newtown in the County of Mayo, was created in the Baronetage of Ireland in 1662 for Major Arthur Gore, who represented County Mayo in the Irish House of Commons. He was the second son of Sir Paul Gore, 1st Baronet, of Magherabegg. He was succeeded by his grandson, the second Baron. He sat as Member of the Irish Parliament for Donegal Borough and County Mayo. On his death the title passed to his son, the aforementioned third Baronet, who was later elevated to the peerage.

Several other members of the Gore family have also gained distinction. John Gore, 1st Baron Annaly, and Henry Gore, 1st Baron Annaly, were the sons of George Gore, second son of Sir Arthur Gore, 1st Baronet. The latter's third son William Gore was the ancestor of the Barons Harlech (the present holder of this title is also in remainder to the baronetcy of Newtown). Sir John Gore, brother of Sir Paul Gore, 1st Baronet, of Magherabegg, was Lord Mayor of London in 1624 and is the ancestor of the branch of the family which later inherited through marriage the earldom of Temple of Stowe. Also, Sir Booth Gore, 1st Baronet, of Artarman, was a descendant of Sir Francis Gore, fourth son of Sir Paul Gore, 1st Baronet, of Magherabegg.

Earls of Arran, first creation (1662)[edit]

Earls of Arran, second creation (1693)[edit]

Gore Baronets, of Newtown (1662)[edit]

Arms of Gore family, Earls of Arran: Gules, a fesse between three crosses fitchée or

Earls of Arran, third creation (1762)[edit]

The heir presumptive is William Henry Gore (born 1950), a great-great-grandson of the Hon. Charles Alexander Gore, brother of the fourth Earl, and son of Paul Annesley Gore CMG CVO (1921–2012). However, he is not in remainder to the barony of Sudley.

See also[edit]