Earl of Huntingdon

Earl of Huntingdon

Earl of Huntingdon is a title which has been created several times in the Peerage of England. The title is chiefly associated with the Hastings family. Sir William Hastings (c. 1430-1483) served as Lord Chamberlain and as Ambassador to France. On 26 July 1461 he was summoned to Parliament as Baron Hastings, of Ashby de la Zouche. The title, which is in the Peerage of England, was created by writ, which means that it can descend through both male and female lines. Lord Hastings was beheaded on Tower Hill in 1483. He was succeeded by his son, the second Baron. He married Mary, daughter of Robert Hungerford, 3rd Baron Hungerford and 2nd Baron de Moleyns, who had been attainted in 1461. Mary managed to obtain a reversal of the attainders of the baronies of Hungerford, de Moleyns and Botreaux. In 1482, one year before the death of his father, her husband was summoned to Parliament in her right as Lord Hungerford.

They were both succeeded by their son George Hastings, 3rd Baron Hastings, 5th Baron Hungerford, 6th Baron Botreaux and 4th Baron de Moleyns. He fought in the French Wars of Henry VIII. In 1529 the King created him Earl of Huntingdon in the Peerage of England. His eldest son, the second Earl, was a Lieutenant-General and served as Commander-in-Chief of the Army. Lord Huntingdon married Katherine, daughter and co-heiress of Henry Pole, 1st Baron Montagu, son of Sir Richard Pole and Margaret Pole, 8th Countess of Salisbury, daughter and sole heiress of George, Duke of Clarence, brother of King Edward IV. On his death the titles passed to his son, the third Earl. He was heir presumptive to the crown through his mother. Lord Huntingdon was one of the custodians of Mary, Queen of Scots, and also served as President of the Council of the North. He was succeeded by his younger brother, the fourth Earl. He represented Derbyshire and Leicestershire in the House of Commons and served as Lord-Lieutenant of Rutland and Leicestershire.

When he died the titles passed to his grandson, the fifth Earl. He was the son of Francis Hastings, Lord Hastings (d. 1595). Lord Huntingdon was also Lord-Lieutenant of Leicestershire and Rutland. He was succeeded by his eldest son, the sixth Earl. He sat as Member of Parliament for Leicestershire. His son, the seventh Earl, served as Lord-Lieutenant of Leicestershire and Derbyshire. He was succeeded by his eldest son, the eighth Earl. He carried the Sceptre at the Coronation of Queen Anne but died at an early age. He was succeeded by his half-brother, the ninth Earl. He carried the Sword of State at the Coronation of King George II. His son, the tenth Earl, was a courtier and notably served as Master of the Horse. He had no legitimate male issue and on his death in 1789 the earldom became dormant. He was succeeded in the baronies of Hastings, Hungerford, de Moleyns and Botreaux by his sister Lady Elizabeth, wife of John Rawdon, 1st Earl of Moira.

The earldom was assumed by the late Earl's distant relative (his fifth cousin once removed) Reverend Theophilus Henry Hastings. He was the great-great-great-grandson of Sir Edward Hastings (d. 1603), younger son of the second Earl. He is by some sources considered as the "de jure" eleventh Earl while some sources do not include him in the numbering of the Earls. On his death the claim passed to his nephew Hans Francis Hastings, son of George Hastings. He was allowed to take his seat in the House of Lords as the Earl of Huntingdon in 1819. Depending on the sources he is numbered as the eleventh or twelfth Earl. Lord Huntingdon served as Governor of Jamaica from 1822 to 1824. His great-great-grandson (the titles having descended from father to son), the sixteenth (or fifteenth Earl), was an artist, academic and Labour politician. He died without male issue in 1990 and was succeeded by his first cousin once removed, the seventeenth (or sixteenth) and (as of 2007) present holder of the title. He is the eldest son of Captain Peter Robin Hood Hastings Bass (1920-1964) (who assumed the additional surname of Bass, which was that of his father-in-law, Sir William Bass, 2nd Baronet, by deed poll in 1954), son of Aubrey Craven Theophilus Robin Hood Hastings (1878-1929), younger son of the fourteenth Earl.

Several other members of the Hastings family may be mentioned. The Hon. Edward Hastings, third son of the first Earl, was created Baron Hastings of Loughborough in 1558. The Hon. Henry Hastings, second son of the fifth Earl, was created Baron Loughborough in 1643. Lucy Hastings, Countess of Huntingdon, wife of the sixth Earl, was a poet. Selina Hastings, Countess of Huntingdon, wife of the ninth Earl, was a Methodist leader and the founder of the Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion. The Hon. George Fowler Hastings, second son of the twelfth (or eleventh) Earl, was a Vice-Admiral in the Royal Navy. Alexander Plantagenet Hastings (1843-1928), son of Captain the Hon. Edward Plantagenet Robin Hood Hastings (1818-1857), third son of the twelfth (or eleventh) Earl, was an Admiral in the Royal Navy. His son Edward George Godolphin Hastings (1887-1973) was a Captain in the Royal Navy.

The Earl possesses no subsidiary titles, but his eldest son uses the invented courtesy title of "Viscount Hastings" to avoid confusion, there already being a Baron Hastings.

The family seat of the present line is at Hodcott House, near West Ilsley, in Berkshire.

In fiction, the English folk-hero Robin Hood is sometimes described as Robert, Earl of Huntingdon.

Earls in for the Honour of Huntingdon, First Creation (1065)

*Waltheof (d. 1076)
*Maud, Countess of Huntingdon
** m. Simon I de Senlis
** m. David I of Scotland
*Henry of Scotland
*Simon II de Senlis
*Malcolm IV, King of Scots
*William I, King of Scots
*Simon III de Senlis
*David of Scotland, Earl of Huntingdon (d. 1219)
*John of Scotland, Earl of Huntingdon

Earls of Huntingdon, Second Creation (1337)

*William de Clinton, 1st Earl of Huntingdon (1304-1354)

Earls of Huntingdon, Third Creation (1377)

*Guichard d'Angle, Earl of Huntingdon (d. 1380) (Life Peerage)

Earls of Huntingdon, Fourth Creation (1388)

*John Holland, 1st Duke of Exeter (1350-1400) (forfeit 1400)
*John Holland, 2nd Duke of Exeter (1395-1447) (restored 1439)
*Henry Holland, 3rd Duke of Exeter (1430-1475) (forfeit 1461)

Earls of Huntingdon, Fifth Creation (1471)

*see Marquess of Dorset, third creation

Earls of Huntingdon, Sixth Creation (1479)

*William Herbert, 1st Earl of Huntingdon (1451–1491)

Baron Hastings (1461)

*William Hastings, 1st Baron Hastings (c. 1430-1483
*Edward Hastings, 2nd Baron Hastings (c. 1464-1506)
*George Hastings, 3rd Baron Hastings (1488-1544) (created Earl of Huntingdon in 1529)

Earls of Huntingdon, Seventh Creation (1529)

*George Hastings, 1st Earl of Huntingdon (1488-1544)
*Francis Hastings, 2nd Earl of Huntingdon (1514-1560)
*Henry Hastings, 3rd Earl of Huntingdon (1536-1595)
*George Hastings, 4th Earl of Huntingdon (1540-1604)
*Henry Hastings, 5th Earl of Huntingdon (1586-1643)
*Ferdinando Hastings, 6th Earl of Huntingdon (1609-1656)
*Theophilus Hastings, 7th Earl of Huntingdon (1650-1701)
*George Hastings, 8th Earl of Huntingdon (1677-1705)
*Theophilus Hastings, 9th Earl of Huntingdon (1696-1746)
*Francis Hastings, 10th Earl of Huntingdon (1729-1789) (dormant)
*Theophilus Henry Hastings, "de jure" 11th Earl of Huntingdon (1728-1804)
*Hans Francis Hastings, 12th Earl of Huntingdon (1779-1828) (confirmed in title 1819)
*Francis Theophilus Henry Hastings, 13th Earl of Huntingdon (1808-1875)
*Francis Power Plantagenet Hastings, 14th Earl of Huntingdon (1841-1885)
*Warner Francis John Plantagenet Hastings, 15th Earl of Huntingdon (1868-1939)
*Francis John Clarence Westenra Plantagenet Hastings, 16th Earl of Huntingdon (1901-1990)
*William Edward Robin Hood Hastings-Bass, 17th Earl of Huntingdon (b. 1948)

The Heir Presumptive is the present holder's younger brother the Hon. Simon Aubrey Robin Hood Hastings Bass (b. 1950)

The Heir Presumptive's Heir Presumptive is his younger brother the Hon. John Hastings-Bass (b. 1954)

ee also

*Baron Hastings
*Baron Hungerford
*Baron Botreaux
*Baron de Moleyns


*Kidd, Charles, Williamson, David (editors). "Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage" (1990 edition). New York: St Martin's Press, 1990.
* [http://www.angeltowns.com/town/peerage/ Leigh Rayment's Peerage Page]
* [http://www.thepeerage.com/ www.thepeerage.com]

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