Earl of Howth

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Howth Castle, the seat of the St Lawrence family.

Earl of Howth was a title in the Peerage of Ireland. It was created in 1767 for Thomas St Lawrence, 15th Baron Howth, who was elevated to Viscount St Lawrence at the same time, also in the Peerage of Ireland. The St Lawrence family descended from Christopher St Lawrence who was elevated to the Peerage of Ireland as Baron Howth in about 1425. The third and fourth Barons both served as Lord Chancellor of Ireland.

The fourth baron was a distinguished soldier who fought at the Battle of Knockdoe; his grandson, the seventh baron, was also a notable soldier. The eighth baron, commonly known as "the blind lord", was one of the leading Irish statesmen of his time, and led the opposition to the Government's taxation policy in the 1570s. His son, the ninth baron was an open Roman Catholic, and led the opposition to the Penal Laws in the early 17th century. The tenth baron was a notable military commander who served in the Nine Years War with the Earl of Essex and Lord Mountjoy. The fourteenth Baron represented Ratoath in the Irish House of Commons, and was a friend of Jonathan Swift. The third Earl served as Lord-Lieutenant of Dublin.[1]

The fourth Earl sat as Member of Parliament for Galway Borough, and in 1881 he was created Baron Howth, of Howth in the County of Dublin, in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. All these titles became extinct upon his death in 1909 as he left no male heir. The family seat, Howth Castle, still belongs to their descendants in the female line, the Gaisford-St Lawrence family.[2]

Barons Howth (c. 1425)[edit]

Earls of Howth (1767)[edit]


  1. ^ Ball, F. Elrington History of Dublin Alexander Thom and Co 1917 Vol. 5
  2. ^ Ball History of Dublin

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