Earldom of Elgin
held with
Earldom of Kincardine
Or, a saltire and chief gules on a canton argent a lion rampant azure armed and langued of the second[1]
Creation date21 June 1633
Created byCharles I
PeeragePeerage of Scotland
First holderThomas Bruce, 3rd Lord Kinloss
Present holderAndrew Bruce, 11th Earl of Elgin
Heir apparentCharles Bruce, Lord Bruce
Remainder toHeirs male forever, bearing the name Bruce[1]
Subsidiary titlesBaron Elgin
Lord Bruce of Kinloss
Lord Bruce of Torry
Seat(s)Broomhall House
MottoFuimus ("We have been")[1]

Earl of Elgin /ˈɛlɡɪn/ is a title in the Peerage of Scotland, created in 1633 for Thomas Bruce, 3rd Lord Kinloss. He was later created Baron Bruce, of Whorlton in the County of York, in the Peerage of England on 30 July 1641. The Earl of Elgin is the hereditary Clan Chief of Clan Bruce.[1]


The family descended from the Bruces of Clackmannan, whose ancestor was Thomas de Bruys. According to Sir James Balfour Paul, there is no evidence that this branch of the family was descended from Robert the Bruce (King Robert I), despite claims that Thomas was an illegitimate son of the king.[2] However, King Robert's son David II made a grant of land in 1359 to Robert Bruce referring to him as dilecto consanguineo suo (our beloved cousin).[3] It was generally accepted that Clackmannan branch descended from John de Brus who was a younger son of Robert de Brus, 5th Lord of Annandale.[4][5]

The first earl was succeeded by his son, Robert, who also was created Earl of Ailesbury in the Peerage of England. The two Earldoms continued united until the death of the fourth Earl of Elgin, when the Ailesbury and Baron Bruce (of Whorlton) titles became extinct, and the Elgin title passed to the Earl of Kincardine; the Lordship of Kinloss became dormant. Thereafter, the Earldoms of Elgin and Kincardine have remained united.[1]

In Dublin there are roads that come from the Earl's titles. These are Elgin Road and Ailesbury Road.

The most famous Earl was the 7th Earl, who removed and transported to Britain the so-called Elgin Marbles from the Parthenon.

As well as the titles Earl of Elgin and Earl of Kincardine, Lord Elgin also holds the titles Lord Bruce of Kinloss (created 1604), Lord Bruce of Torry (1647) and Baron Elgin, of Elgin in Scotland (1849). The first two are in the Peerage of Scotland; the third is in the Peerage of the United Kingdom.[1]

The Lordship of Kinloss held by the first four Earls was inherited on the death of the 4th Earl by the 3rd Duke of Chandos. Through his daughter it passed to the Dukes of Buckingham and Chandos, and is now held by these Dukes' heir of line.[1]

The family seat is Broomhall House, three miles south-west of Dunfermline, Scotland.[6]

Feudal Barons of Clackmannan

Lords Bruce of Kinloss (1604)

Earls of Elgin (1633)

The heir apparent is the present holder's son Charles Edward Bruce, Lord Bruce (b. 1961).[1]
The heir apparent's heir apparent is his son James Andrew Charles Robert Bruce, Master of Bruce (b. 1991).[1]

Family tree

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Mosley, Charles, ed. (2003). Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knighthood (107 ed.). Burke's Peerage & Gentry. pp. 1293–1299. ISBN 0-9711966-2-1.
  2. ^ Balfour Paul, James, ed. (1906). The Scot's Peerage, Vol. III. Edinburgh: David Doulas. pp. 466–467. ISBN 0-9711966-2-1.
  3. ^ "The peerage of Scotland: containing an historical and genealogical account of the nobility of that Kingdom by George Crawfurd, Esq". Eighteenth Century Collections Online. Retrieved 28 January 2019.
  4. ^ "The peerage of Scotland: containing an historical and genealogical account of the nobility of that kingdom, ... collected from the public records, and ancient chartularies of this nation, ... Illustrated with copper-plates. By Robert Douglas, Esq". Eighteenth Century Collections Online. Retrieved 28 January 2019.
  5. ^ "The Scots peerage; founded on Wood's edition of Sir Robert Douglas's peerage of Scotland; containing an historical and genealogical account of the nobility of that kingdom by Paul, James Balfour". Internet Archive. Retrieved 28 January 2019.
  6. ^ Cameron, Courtney (16 May 2014). "Robert the Bruce heir says No to independence". The Scotsman. Retrieved 1 January 2017.