Duke of Northumberland

Duke of Northumberland

The Duke of Northumberland is a title in the peerage of Great Britain that has been created several times. Since the third creation in 1766, the title has belonged to the House of Percy (Perci), which held the title of Earl of Northumberland from 1377.

The traditional burial place of the Dukes of Northumberland is Westminster Abbey in London, the Percys thus being the last family to maintain such a privilege.


1551 creation

The title Duke of Northumberland was created in 1551 for John Dudley, Earl of Warwick. In 1553 Dudley advanced the claim of his daughter-in-law, Lady Jane Grey, to the English throne, but when she was deposed by Queen Mary I, Dudley was convicted of high treason and executed. A bastard son of one of his younger sons, Robert Dudley, 1st Earl of Leicester, Sir Robert Dudley, claimed the dukedom and used the title in early 17th century when in exile in Italy (On 9 March 1620 the Emperor Ferdinand II purportly recognised his claim to the title ‘Duke of Northumberland).

1674 creation

George Fitzroy, a bastard of king Charles II, was awarded the title in 1674, but it became extinct in 1716 as Fitzroy left no heirs. In the same year, Philip Wharton, 1st Duke of Wharton was created "Duke of Northumberland", together with other subsidiary titles in the Jacobite Peerage, by "King James III & VIII" (James Francis Edward Stuart, known as the "Old Pretender" or the "Chevalier de St. Georges").

1766 creation

The title was created for the third time in 1766 for heirs of a totally different family, the earlier earls of Northumberland, and it has been in the Percy family ever since. The seat of the Dukes of Northumberland is Alnwick Castle, in Alnwick, Northumberland; their London residence is Syon House in Brentford.

The subsidiary titles of the Duke of Northumberland are: Earl of Northumberland (created 1749), Earl Percy (1766), Earl of Beverley (1790), Baron Warkworth (1749) and Baron Lovaine (1784). All titles are in the Peerage of Great Britain. The courtesy title of the eldest son and heir to the Duke is Earl Percy.

List of titleholders

Dukes of Northumberland, First Creation (1551)

Other titles: Earl of Warwick (England, 1547); Viscount Lisle (England, 1543); Baron Lisle (England, 1444)

Dukes of Northumberland, Second Creation (1683)

Other titles: Earl of Northumberland, Viscount Falmouth and Baron of Pontefract (all England, 1674)

Titular Dukes of Northumberland (Jacobite Peerage, 1716)

Duke of Wharton; Marquess of Wharton (Great Britain, 1715); Marquess of Malmesbury (Great Britain, 1715); Marquess of Catherlough (Ireland, 1715); Earl of Wharton (England, 1706); Earl of Rathfarnham (Ireland, 1715); Viscount Winchendon (England, 1706); Baron Wharton (England, 1544); Baron Trim (Ireland, 1715)

Earls of Northumberland (1749 creation)

Other titles: Duke of Somerset (England, 1547); Earl of Hertford (England, 1559); Earl of Egremont (Great Britain, 1749); Baron Beauchamp (England, 1559); Baron Seymour of Trowbridge (England, 1641); Baron Percy (Great Britain, 1722); Baron Lovaine (Great Britain, 1784)

Dukes of Northumberland, Third Creation (1766)

Other titles: Earl of Northumberland (Great Britain, 1749); Earl Percy (Great Britain, 1766); Baron Warkworth (Great Britain, 1749); Baron Percy (Great Britain, 1722); Baron Lovaine (1st Duke) (Great Britain, 1784); Baron Prudhoe (United Kingdom, 1816, extinct 1865)
Other titles (5th Duke onwards): Baron Lovaine (Great Britain, 1784); Earl of Beverley (Great Britain, 1790)
  • Henry Percy, Earl Percy (1871–1909), eldest son of the 7th Duke, predeceased his father unmarried
  • Hon. Josceline Percy (1876–1898), second son of the 7th Duke, predeceased his father unmarried
  • Hon. Ralph William Percy (1877–1889), third son of the 7th Duke, predeceased his father in childhood

Heir-apparent: George Dominic Percy, Earl Percy (b. 4 May 1984), eldest son of the 12th Duke

Line of succession

  1. George Dominic Percy, Earl Percy (b. 1984) (elder son of the 12th Duke)
  2. Lord Max Ralph Percy (b. 1990) (younger son of the 12th Duke)
  3. Lord James William Eustace Percy (b. 1965) (third son of the 10th Duke)
  4. Thomas Hugh Percy (b. 2001) (elder son of Lord James)
  5. Samuel James Edward Percy (b. 2008) (younger son of Lord James)
  6. Algernon Alan Percy (b. 1969) (elder son of Lord Richard Charles Percy, third son of the 8th Duke)
  7. Josceline Richard Percy (b. 1971) (younger brother of Algernon Percy)
  8. George Robert Percy (b. 1953) (grandson of Lord William Richard Percy, fifth son of the 7th Duke)
  9. James Edward Caulfeild Percy (b. 1958) (younger brother of George Percy)
  10. Richard John Percy (b. 1957) (first cousin of George and James Percy)
  11. Andrew Alan Percy (b. 1963) (younger brother of Richard Percy)
  12. Ayden Jay Percy (b. 1992) (elder son of Andrew Percy)
  13. Callum Zane Percy (b. 1994) (younger son of Andrew Percy)
  14. Algernon Eustace Hugh Heber-Percy (b. 1944) (great-great-grandson of Algernon Charles Heber-Percy, eldest son of the Rt. Rev. and Hon. Hugh Percy, younger brother of the 5th Duke)
  15. Algernon Thomas Lever Heber-Percy (b. 1984) (only son of Algernon Eustace Hugh Heber-Percy)
  16. William David Heber-Percy (b. 1939) (first cousin of Algernon Eustace Hugh Heber-Percy)
  17. Peter Hugh Heber-Percy (b. 1971) (only son of William Heber-Percy)
  18. Cyril Raymond Heber-Percy (b. 1945) (younger brother of William Heber-Percy)
  19. Michael David Heber-Percy (b. 1943) (second cousin of Algernon Eustace Hugh, William and Cyril Heber-Percy)
  20. Colin Michael Heber-Percy (b. 1968) (elder son of Michael Heber-Percy)
  21. Joseph George Heber-Percy (b. 2000) (elder son of Colin Heber-Percy)
  22. Theodore Michael Philip Heber-Percy (b. 2002) (younger son of Colin Heber-Percy)
  23. Paul David Heber-Percy (b. 1970) (younger son of Michael Heber-Percy)
  24. Robin Erskine Heber-Percy (b. 1927) (third cousin of Algernon Eustace Hugh, William, Cyril and Michael Heber-Percy)
  25. Philip Reginald Heber-Percy (b. 1929) (younger brother of Robin Heber-Percy)
  26. John Kellie Heber-Percy (b. 1935) (younger brother of Robin and Philip Heber-Percy)
  27. Christopher John Heber-Percy (b. 1941) (first cousin of Robin, Philip and John Heber-Percy)
  28. William John Heber-Percy (b. 1965) (elder son of Christopher Heber-Percy)
  29. Thomas Henry Heber-Percy (b. 1967) (younger son of Christopher Heber-Percy)
  30. Hugh Edward Percy (b. 1938) (great-grandson of the Rev. Henry Percy, second son of the Rt. Rev. and Hon. Hugh Percy)

See also

In popular culture

Lord Percy Percy, played by Tim McInnerny, is a major character in the first two series of the British sitcom Blackadder. Actually two characters with almost identical personalities, Percy is the Duke of Northumberland in the first series, The Black Adder, and heir to the same title in Blackadder II. Loyal despite being abused for his bumbling, Percy is a sidekick to the title character of the series, Edmund Blackadder.


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