Wednesday, 19 March 2008

Peerages


This is Highland Stoneware car! Have a closer look and you'll see that the car is covered with pieces of broken pottery.
I checked Titles & Forms of Address yesterday about peerages, addressing Peers in general and Marquesses in particular. (Not that I shall be addressing any of them, but if I want to write about them, I'd like to get it somewhere close to correct.) Here's what I found. Marquis is the French spelling of the English word, and the Scots usually prefer that spelling though it is up to the incumbent to state which he prefers. The Irish form is usually Marquess.
The titles are usually territorial, as in The Marquess of Londonderry, whose family name is Vane-Tempest-Stewart. (The ancestors were noted in the north-east of England for coal mining, developing Seaham Harbour and once owned Wynyard Park in County Durham. In 1987 they sold it to Sir John Hall of Metrocentre fame, and as of 2002 it was up for sale again for £8 million.) The eldest son is known by his courtesy title of Viscount Castlereagh.
Sometimes the titles are family names, as in The Marquess Conyngham, The Marquess Camden or The Marquess Douro - though the present incumbent of the last title prefers to to use the prefix of, as in The Marquess of Douro.
Younger sons of dukes are addressed as Lord John (Christian name) Smith (family name). A Marquess is addressed as Lord Camden, or Lord Conyngham, or Lord Douro. The Earl of Monkseaton would be addressed as Lord Monkseaton, and Baron Westly, family name Whitworth, as Lord Westly. So...my characters should be able to tell when they address the younger son of a Duke and when they speak to a lower ranking peer.
But I think I need to check and see how younger sons of Marquesses, Earls, Viscounts and Barons are addressed. I suspect the youngers sons and daughters use the family name - Lady Diana Spencer is an example, but if a Duke's daughter is called Lady Jane Watson, how will the difference in rank known?

2 comments:

Caffey said...

Hi Jen! It was so great to see you in chat today, even tho I arrived when it was over, but I could go back and read up alot! I so love both blurbs/excerpts for the medieval (a favorite setting of mine) and too the viking! I saw the medieval is in print, is the viking book plan to be in print as well? (They sound like keepers) Too I was looking for a newsletter link. Can you email me and let me know: tbranxiety (at) yahoo (dot) com
Thanks
Wow, on the car! I'm sending this link to my hubby since he's fascinated with cars, and even things like this! Its always so interesting to learn about the history,culture, clothing, rules, and just everything! I had no idea the Scots spelled the Marquess differently. I don't think I saw it spelled as you found it should be in books. I don't check for any accuracy in books, because I don't know much, I learn most from reading romance books! But I love to see something I didn't know and learn more about it. I will look up things sometimes, but get so lost in it that nothing else gets done for hours, LOL. I think thats why I love historical romance so much, its beautiful to get lost within the story, the time setting and all thats read. Thanks for sharing this all! Loved it.
(Cathie)

Jen Black said...

Cathie, I've replied to your e-mail address, so I hope it gets through.
My publisher has no plans to put Dark Pool forward into print (as yet) so I'm afraid it is only Banners available in print.