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1. (in the British Isles) a nobleman ranking below a marquess and above a viscount
2. (in Anglo-Saxon England) a royal governor of any of the large divisions of the kingdom, such as Wessex



in early medieval England, a member of the hereditary nobility, as distinguished from an ordinary freeman, or ceorl. The average size of an earl’s holding was 40 hides. As Anglo-Saxon society became feudalized, the earls, in the late seventh century, became part of the general landed aristocracy required to render state service, the thanes. Since the 11th century the term “earl” has designated a noble rank corresponding to that of count.

References in periodicals archive ?
It is clear though, that as he grew older and especially after his inheritance of the Earldom, he became more libertarian.
But Haig did, to be handed an earldom, though Lloyd George condemned him "for treating his soldiers with disdain, while staying far from the front line".
John Stanley 18th Earl of Derby 1918-1994 The eldest son of Lord Stanley inherited Alycidon along with the earldom from his grandfather in 1948, and that colt became the greatest stayer of the post-war era with a historic victory in the 1949 Ascot Gold Cup.
And if you were British and found it to where the canoeing was being held you were awarded an Earldom and the right to graze sheep on the top of Bruce Forsyth's head for four score years and ten.
Chapter 9 summarizes Tany's own accounts with reference to the biblical and English roots of his pedigree as well as historical explanations of the known details about the earldom of Essex leading up to Tany's claim to the English crown in 1650.
The characters were scrutinised in a modern and meaningful way in the Big Brother Diary Room chair, with Buckingham talking about his feelings at being refused the earldom, whilst Richard and Tyrell talked tactics in the kitchen, planning and plotting to get the princes 'voted out'.
Warwick Castle: Overlooking the River Avon, the country's finest medieval castle is traditionally associated with the earldom of Warwick, one of the oldest in England.
These old republicans will fuck shears for an earldom.
And look when I am king, claim thou of me The earldom of Hereford and all the movables Whereof the King my brother was possessed.
He was like Louis Mazzini (the part played by Alec Guinness) in Kind Hearts and Coronets, memorializing his life of crime in pursuit of the D'Ascoyne earldom and then being undone when his writings were discovered after he had forgotten them in his cell.
The earldom is one of the most ancient titles of Scotland (circa 1260) and Dunrobin Castle, near Golspie, is the family seat.
Forstner's Notae Politicae on Tacitus's Annales were published over a number of years, from the volume on the first six books, written and published in Padua in 1626 when Forstner was a young student, to the second volume (1651), dedicated to the imperial chancellor, Peter Heinrich of Stralendorf, through whom Forstner hoped to secure a position at the court in Vienna, to the commentaries on the later books, written and published in 1652 and 1662, after he had witnessed first hand, as the chancellor of the earldom of Montpelier (with responsibilities in Paris), the intricacies of political behavior and court intrigue from Paris to Uppsala and Vienna.