Earl of Essex

Earl of Essex

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Earl of Essex is a title that has been held by several families and individuals. The earldom was first created in the 12th century for Geoffrey II de Mandeville
Geoffrey de Mandeville, 1st Earl of Essex
Geoffrey de Mandeville II, 1st Earl of Essex was one of the prominent players during the reign of King Stephen of England. His biographer, the 19th-century historian J. H...

 (d. 1144). Upon the death of the third earl in 1189, the title became dormant or extinct. Geoffrey fitz Peter, who had married Beatrice de Say, granddaughter of the first earl's sister and eventual heir to the Mandeville honour, gained the earldom in 1199. The title passed to two of his sons before again becoming extinct after the death of the second, William, the 6th Earl of Essex, who had taken the surname de Mandeville.

The third creation was for Humphrey de Bohun, 2nd Earl of Hereford in 1239, whose father Henry had married Maud, sister of the sixth earl. Both the Earldom of Hereford, Earldom of Northampton and the Earldom of Essex became extant in 1373, reconfirmation of titles on heirs to be issued soon. There were several more creations until the famous Devereux creation in 1572, which included Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex
Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex
Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, KG was an English nobleman and a favourite of Elizabeth I. Politically ambitious, and a committed general, he was placed under house arrest following a poor campaign in Ireland during the Nine Years' War in 1599...

 (1566–1601) a favourite of Queen Elizabeth I and his son Robert Devereux, 3rd Earl of Essex
Robert Devereux, 3rd Earl of Essex
Robert Devereux, 3rd Earl of Essex was an English Parliamentarian and soldier during the first half of the seventeenth century. With the start of the English Civil War in 1642 he became the first Captain-General and Chief Commander of the Parliamentarian army, also known as the Roundheads...

, the general who commanded the Parliamentary army at the Battle of Edge Hill, the first major battle of the English Civil War
English Civil War
The English Civil War was a series of armed conflicts and political machinations between Parliamentarians and Royalists...

 (for further history of the Devereux family, see the Viscount Hereford
Viscount Hereford
Viscount Hereford is a title in the Peerage of England. It was created in 1550 for Walter Devereux, 9th Baron Ferrers of Chartley. The Devereux family is of Norman descent and came to England after the Norman conquest in 1066, and settled in Lyonshall and Bodenham, Herefordshire. Sir Walter...

). Upon its extinction, the present creation was made in 1661.

Capell creation



The Capell (or Capel) family descends from Sir Arthur Capell of Raines Hall in Essex
Essex
Essex is a ceremonial and non-metropolitan county in the East region of England, and one of the home counties. It is located to the northeast of Greater London. It borders with Cambridgeshire and Suffolk to the north, Hertfordshire to the west, Kent to the South and London to the south west...

 and of Hadham in Hertfordshire
Hertfordshire
Hertfordshire is a ceremonial and non-metropolitan county in the East region of England. The county town is Hertford.The county is one of the Home Counties and lies inland, bordered by Greater London , Buckinghamshire , Bedfordshire , Cambridgeshire and...

. His grandson Arthur Capell represented Hertfordshire
Hertfordshire (UK Parliament constituency)
Hertfordshire was a county constituency covering the county of Hertfordshire in England. It returned two Knights of the Shire to the House of Commons of England until 1707, then to the House of Commons of Great Britain until 1800, and to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom...

 in both the Short
Short Parliament
The Short Parliament was a Parliament of England that sat from 13 April to 5 May 1640 during the reign of King Charles I of England, so called because it lasted only three weeks....

 and Long Parliament
Long Parliament
The Long Parliament was made on 3 November 1640, following the Bishops' Wars. It received its name from the fact that through an Act of Parliament, it could only be dissolved with the agreement of the members, and those members did not agree to its dissolution until after the English Civil War and...

s. In 1641 he was raised to the Peerage of England
Peerage of England
The Peerage of England comprises all peerages created in the Kingdom of England before the Act of Union in 1707. In that year, the Peerages of England and Scotland were replaced by one Peerage of Great Britain....

 as Baron Capell of Hadham, in the County of Hertford. Capell later fought as a Royalist in the Civil War
English Civil War
The English Civil War was a series of armed conflicts and political machinations between Parliamentarians and Royalists...

. He was tried and condemned to death by the Parliamentarians and beheaded in May 1649. He was succeeded by his eldest son, the second Baron. In 1661 he was created Viscount Malden, in the County of Essex, and Earl of Essex, with remainder, failing heirs male of his own, to, firstly, his brother Henry Capell (later Baron Capell of Tewkesbury; see below), failing which to, secondly, his brother Edward Capell. These titles are also in the Peerage of England. Lord Essex later served as Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland and as First Lord of the Treasury
First Lord of the Treasury
The First Lord of the Treasury is the head of the commission exercising the ancient office of Lord High Treasurer in the United Kingdom, and is now always also the Prime Minister...

. On his death the titles passed to his son, the second Earl. He was a Lieutenant-General in the Army and served as Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire. He was succeeded by his son, the third Earl. He served as Captain of the Yeomen of the Guard
Captain of the Yeomen of the Guard
The Captain of the Queen's Bodyguard of the Yeomen of the Guard is a UK government post usually held by the Government Deputy Chief Whip in the House of Lords...

 from 1739 to 1743 and was also Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire. When he died the titles passed to his son, the fourth Earl. He also served as Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire.

He was succeeded by his eldest son from his first marriage, the fifth Earl. He sat in the House of Commons
British House of Commons
The House of Commons is the lower house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which also comprises the Sovereign and the House of Lords . Both Commons and Lords meet in the Palace of Westminster. The Commons is a democratically elected body, consisting of 650 members , who are known as Members...

 for many years and was Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire from 1801 to 1817. Lord Essex assumed the surname of Coningsby. In 1839, at the age of seventy-six, he married the vocalist and actress Catherine Stephens
Catherine Stephens
Catherine Stephens, Countess of Essex was an English operatic singer and actress.-Early life:Stephens was the daughter of Edward Stephens, a carver and gilder in Park Street, Grosvenor Square, and was born on 18 September 1794. Having shown like her elder sisters some musical ability, she was...

. He was succeeded by his nephew, the sixth Earl. He was the son of the Hon. John Thomas Capell, second son of the fourth Earl from his second marriage to Harriet Bladen. On his death the titles passed to his grandson, the seventh Earl. He was the eldest son of Lieutenant-Colonel Arthur de Vere Capell, Viscount Malden, eldest son of the sixth Earl. The line of the sixth Earl failed on the death of the seventh Earl's grandson, the ninth Earl, in 1981. The succession was unclear and it was not until 1989 that the late Earl's third cousin once removed, Robert Edward de Vere Capell, managed to prove his claim, and became the tenth Earl. He was the great-grandson of the Hon. Algernon Henry Champagné Capell (younger brother of the sixth Earl), son of the aforementioned the Hon. John Thomas Capell (half-brother of the fifth Earl), son of the second marriage of the fourth Earl. As of 2007 the titles are held by his only son, the eleventh Earl, who succeeded in 2005. William Jennings Capell
William Jennings Capell
William Jennings Capell , a retired grocery clerk from Yuba City, California, is the heir presumptive to the Earldom of Essex. He will be the 12th Earl if the current earl, Paul Capell, 11th Earl of Essex , dies without legitimate male issue...

, a retired grocery clerk from Yuba City, California and distant cousin of the 11th Earl, is the heir presumptive to the Earldom of Essex. He will be the 12th Earl if the current earl, Paul Capell, 11th Earl of Essex (currently 66 and unmarried), dies without legitimate male issue.

Viscount Malden is used as the courtesy title by the heir apparent to the earldom (when one exists).

Two other members of the Capell family have also gained distinction. The Hon. Henry Capell
Henry Capell, 1st Baron Capell of Tewkesbury
Henry Capell, 1st Baron Capell of Tewkesbury KB, PC was a seventeenth century English politician.-Background:...

, second son of the first Baron, was a politician and was created Baron Capell of Tewkesbury in 1692. The Hon. Sir Thomas Bladen Capell (1776–1853), youngest son of the second marriage of the fourth Earl, was an Admiral
Admiral
Admiral is the rank, or part of the name of the ranks, of the highest naval officers. It is usually considered a full admiral and above vice admiral and below admiral of the fleet . It is usually abbreviated to "Adm" or "ADM"...

 in the Royal Navy
Royal Navy
The Royal Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Founded in the 16th century, it is the oldest service branch and is known as the Senior Service...

.

Earls of Essex, first Creation (c. 1139)

  • Geoffrey de Mandeville, 1st Earl of Essex
    Geoffrey de Mandeville, 1st Earl of Essex
    Geoffrey de Mandeville II, 1st Earl of Essex was one of the prominent players during the reign of King Stephen of England. His biographer, the 19th-century historian J. H...

     (d. 1144)
  • Geoffrey de Mandeville, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Geoffrey de Mandeville, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Geoffrey de Mandeville, 2nd Earl of Essex was an English nobleman. He was the son of Geoffrey de Mandeville, 1st Earl of Essex and Rohese de Vere, Countess of Essex. He inherited the Earldom of Essex from his father after his elder brother was disinherited. He died childless and was succeeded by...

     (d. 1166)
  • William de Mandeville, 3rd Earl of Essex
    William de Mandeville, 3rd Earl of Essex
    William de Mandeville, 3rd Earl of Essex was a loyal councilor of Henry II and Richard I of England.He was the second son of Geoffrey de Mandeville, 1st Earl of Essex and Rohese de Vere, Countess of Essex. After his father's death while in rebellion , William grew up at the court of the Count of...

     (d. 1189) (extinct)

Earls of Essex, second Creation (1199)

  • Geoffrey Fitzpeter, 1st Earl of Essex (d. 1213)
  • Geoffrey FitzGeoffrey de Mandeville, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Geoffrey FitzGeoffrey de Mandeville, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Geoffrey FitzGeoffrey de Mandeville, 2nd Earl of Essex and 6th Earl of Gloucester was an English peer and member of the House of Lords...

     (d. 1216)
  • William FitzGeoffrey de Mandeville, 3rd Earl of Essex
    William FitzGeoffrey de Mandeville, 3rd Earl of Essex
    William fitz Geoffrey de Mandeville was the third Earl of Essex of the second creation from 1216 to his death. He was the second son of Geoffrey fitz Peter and Beatrice de Say and he succeeded his elder brother Geoffrey fitz Geoffrey as earl and inheritor of the Mandeville barony...

     (d. 1227)

Earls of Essex, third Creation (1239)

  • Humphrey de Bohun, 1st Earl of Essex
    Humphrey de Bohun, 2nd Earl of Hereford
    Humphrey de Bohun was 2nd Earl of Hereford and 1st Earl of Essex, as well as Constable of England. He was the son of Henry de Bohun, 1st Earl of Hereford and Maud of Essex.- Career :...

     (d. 1275)
  • Humphrey de Bohun, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Humphrey de Bohun, 3rd Earl of Hereford
    Humphrey de Bohun , 3rd Earl of Hereford and 2nd Earl of Essex, was an English nobleman known primarily for his opposition to King Edward I over the Confirmatio Cartarum. He was also an active participant in the Welsh Wars and maintained for several years a private feud with the earl of Gloucester...

     (d. 1297)
  • Humphrey de Bohun, 3rd Earl of Essex
    Humphrey de Bohun, 4th Earl of Hereford
    Humphrey de Bohun, 4th Earl of Hereford was a member of a powerful Anglo-Norman family of the Welsh Marches and was one of the Ordainers who opposed Edward II's excesses.-Family background :...

     (d. 1322)
  • John de Bohun, 4th Earl of Essex
    John de Bohun, 5th Earl of Hereford
    John de Bohun, 5th Earl of Hereford was born in St Clement's, Oxford to Humphrey de Bohun, 4th Earl of Hereford and Elizabeth of Rhuddlan, a daughter of Edward I of England....

     (d. 1336)
  • Humphrey de Bohun, 5th Earl of Essex
    Humphrey de Bohun, 6th Earl of Hereford
    Humphrey de Bohun, 6th Earl of Hereford, 5th Earl of Essex was a Lord High Constable of England.- Lineage :...

     (1309–1361)
  • Humphrey de Bohun, 6th Earl of Essex
    Humphrey de Bohun, 7th Earl of Hereford
    Humphrey de Bohun, 7th Earl of Hereford, 6th Earl of Essex, 2nd Earl of Northampton, KG was an important medieval English noble during the reign of King Edward III of England.- Lineage :...

     (1342–1373)

Heirs to the 3rd creation of Earldom in litigation proceedings.

Earls of Essex, fourth Creation (1376)

  • Thomas of Woodstock, 1st Earl of Essex (1355–1397) (forfeit)

Earls of Essex, fifth Creation (1461)

  • Henry Bourchier, 1st Earl of Essex
    Henry Bourchier, 1st Earl of Essex
    Henry Bourchier, 5th Baron Bourchier, 1st Viscount Bourchier, 1st Earl of Essex, KG , was the eldest son of William Bourchier, 1st Count of Eu and Anne of Gloucester...

     (d. 1483)
  • Henry Bourchier, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Henry Bourchier, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Henry Bourchier, 2nd Earl of Essex, KG, PC was an English soldier, peer and courtier at the courts of Henry VII and Henry VIII. He married Mary Say, by whom he had one daughter, Anne, who became his heir.- Family :...

     (d. 1540)

Earls of Essex, sixth Creation (1540)

  • Thomas Cromwell, 1st Earl of Essex
    Thomas Cromwell, 1st Earl of Essex
    Thomas Cromwell, 1st Earl of Essex, , was an English statesman who served as chief minister of King Henry VIII of England from 1532 to 1540....

     (1485–1540) (forfeit)

Earls of Essex, seventh Creation (1543)

  • William Parr, 1st Marquess of Northampton
    William Parr, 1st Marquess of Northampton
    William Parr, 1st Marquess of Northampton, 1st Earl of Essex and 1st Baron Parr, KG was the son of Sir Thomas Parr and his wife, Maud Green, daughter of Sir Thomas Green, of Broughton and Greens Norton...

     (c. 1512–1571) (forfeit 1553; restored 1559)

Earls of Essex, eighth Creation (1572)

  • Walter Devereux, 1st Earl of Essex
    Walter Devereux, 1st Earl of Essex
    Walter Devereux, 1st Earl of Essex, KG , an English nobleman and general. From 1573 until his death he fought in Ireland in connection with the Plantation of Ulster, where he ordered the massacre of Rathlin Island...

     (1541–1576)
  • Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, KG was an English nobleman and a favourite of Elizabeth I. Politically ambitious, and a committed general, he was placed under house arrest following a poor campaign in Ireland during the Nine Years' War in 1599...

     (1566–1601)
  • Robert Devereux, 3rd Earl of Essex
    Robert Devereux, 3rd Earl of Essex
    Robert Devereux, 3rd Earl of Essex was an English Parliamentarian and soldier during the first half of the seventeenth century. With the start of the English Civil War in 1642 he became the first Captain-General and Chief Commander of the Parliamentarian army, also known as the Roundheads...

     (1591–1646) (extinct)

Barons Capell of Hadham (1641)

  • Arthur Capell, 1st Baron Capell of Hadham (1604–1649)
  • Arthur Capell, 2nd Baron Capell of Hadham
    Arthur Capell, 1st Earl of Essex
    Arthur Capell, 1st Earl of Essex PC , whose surname is sometimes spelled Capel, was an English statesman.-Early life:...

     (1631–1683) (created Earl of Essex in 1661)

Earls of Essex, ninth Creation (1661)

  • Arthur Capell, 1st Earl of Essex
    Arthur Capell, 1st Earl of Essex
    Arthur Capell, 1st Earl of Essex PC , whose surname is sometimes spelled Capel, was an English statesman.-Early life:...

     (1631–1683)
  • Algernon Capell, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Algernon Capell, 2nd Earl of Essex
    Algernon Capell, 2nd Earl of Essex PC was an English nobleman, a soldier and courtier. He was the son of Arthur Capell, 1st Earl of Essex and Elizabeth Percy. After his father's suicide in 1683, Capell became the 2nd Earl of Essex...

     (1670–1710)
  • William Capell, 3rd Earl of Essex
    William Capell, 3rd Earl of Essex
    William Capell, 3rd Earl of Essex, KG, PC was the son of the 2nd Earl of Essex.Capell was one of the founding governors of the charity, the Foundling Hospital, created in October 1739 to care for abandoned children....

     (1697–1743)
  • William Anne Capell, 4th Earl of Essex (1732–1799)
  • George Capell-Coningsby, 5th Earl of Essex (1757–1839)
  • Arthur Algernon Capell, 6th Earl of Essex (1803–1892)
    • Arthur de Vere Capell, Viscount Malden (1826–1879)
  • George Devereux de Vere Capell, 7th Earl of Essex (1857–1916)
  • Algernon George de Vere Capell, 8th Earl of Essex (1884–1966)
  • Reginald George de Vere Capell, 9th Earl of Essex
    Reginald Capell, 9th Earl of Essex
    Reginald George de Vere Capell, 9th Earl of Essex was a British Peer.-Biography:Capell was the son of Algernon George de Vere Capell, 8th Earl of Essex and Mary Eveline Stewart Freeman. He had the courtesy title Viscount Malden, and was known as Reggie Malden. . He was educated at St Cyprian's...

      (1906–1981, dormant 1981)
  • Robert Edward de Vere Capell, 10th Earl of Essex
    Robert Capell, 10th Earl of Essex
    Robert Edward de Vere Capell, 10th Earl of Essex was the Earl of Essex.Lord Essex was born in 1920, the son of Arthur de Vere Capell and Alice Capell née Currie. His father died when he was three. He spent some time in an orphanage, where he was bewildered when the head told him he would be the...

     (1920–2005, revived 1989)
  • (Frederick) Paul de Vere Capell, 11th Earl of Essex
    Paul Capell, 11th Earl of Essex
    Frederick Paul de Vere Capell, 11th Earl of Essex is the current Earl of Essex. He succeeded his father Robert Capell, 10th Earl of Essex, in 2005....

     (b. 1944)


The heir presumptive
Heir Presumptive
An heir presumptive or heiress presumptive is the person provisionally scheduled to inherit a throne, peerage, or other hereditary honour, but whose position can be displaced by the birth of an heir or heiress apparent or of a new heir presumptive with a better claim to the position in question...

 is the present holder's fourth cousin once-removed William Jennings Capell
William Jennings Capell
William Jennings Capell , a retired grocery clerk from Yuba City, California, is the heir presumptive to the Earldom of Essex. He will be the 12th Earl if the current earl, Paul Capell, 11th Earl of Essex , dies without legitimate male issue...

 (b. 1952). He is great-great-great-grandson of the Hon. Adolphus Capell (younger brother of the sixth Earl), younger son of the aforementioned the Hon. John Capell (half-brother of the fifth Earl), son of the second marriage of the fourth Earl.

Family tree



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