Earldom of Lauderdale
Coronet of a British Earl.svg
Earl of Lauderdale arms.svg
Creation date1624
Created byJames VI and I
PeeragePeerage of Scotland
First holderJohn Maitland, 2nd Lord Maitland of Thirlestane
Present holderIan Maitland, 18th Earl of Lauderdale
Heir apparentJohn Douglas Maitland, Master of Lauderdale, Viscount Maitland
Subsidiary titlesViscount of Lauderdale
Viscount Maitland
Lord Maitland of Thirlestane
Lord Thirlestane and Boulton
Former seat(s)Thirlestane Castle
Arms of the Earls of Lauderdale as shown in Brown's The Peerage of Scotland, 1834
Arms of the Earls of Lauderdale as shown in Brown's The Peerage of Scotland, 1834

Earl of Lauderdale is a title in the Peerage of Scotland. The current holder of the title is Ian Maitland, 18th Earl of Lauderdale.

The title was created in 1624 for John Maitland, 2nd Lord Maitland of Thirlestane, Berwickshire. The second Earl was created Duke of Lauderdale and by popular naming represented the "L" in the Cabal ministry, an acronym which amounted to the first major, perennial delegation of power from the monarch to a cabinet. When he died without male issue, the dukedom became extinct. The earldom passed to his brother Charles, 3rd Earl. Charles married, in 1652, Elizabeth, daughter of Richard Lauder of Haltoun and by this marriage came into that family's great estates.

Other titles associated with the earldom are: Viscount of Lauderdale (created 1616), Viscount of Maitland (1624), Lord Maitland of Thirlestane (1590) and Lord Thirlestane and Boulton (1624). All of these titles are in the Peerage of Scotland. The Earl of Lauderdale is the hereditary chief of Clan Maitland. The eldest son is the Master of Lauderdale. The title Viscount Maitland is sometimes used as a courtesy title for the Earl's eldest son and heir.

The Earl of Lauderdale, as Bearer for the Sovereign of the Sovereign's National Flag for Scotland, one of the Officers of the Royal Household in Scotland, has the right to bear the saltire for the Sovereign.

The historical family seat is Thirlestane Castle, near Lauder, in Scotland home of Captain the Hon. Gerald Maitland-Carew and his family. He is the eldest son of Lady Sylvia Maitland – who became wife to the 6th Baron Carew – she was the eldest of two children of the 15th Earl of Lauderdale; her brother was killed in action in North Africa, aged 27 and left three daughters. Therefore the earldom passed to a cadet branch and the castle passed down the more direct female line.

Notable wives and Maitland descendants

Lords Maitland of Thirlestane (May 1590)

Earl of Lauderdale (14 March 1624)

Duke of Lauderdale (1672)

also created Earl of Guilford and Baron Petersham in the Peerage of England in 1674

All three titles created for him became extinct upon his death.

Earl of Lauderdale (1624 - reverted)

The heir apparent is the present holder's son John Douglas Maitland, Viscount Maitland (b. 1965)
The heir apparent's heir presumptive is his uncle Rev. Hon. Sydney Milivoje Maitland (b. 1951)
Next in line is the present holder's sixth cousin twice removed Charles Alexander Maitland, the presumed 10th Baronet (b. 1986)


Coat of arms of the Earl of Lauderdale
Coat of Arms of the Earl of Lauderdale.svg
A Lion sejant affrontée Gules ducally crowned proper in his dexter paw a sword of the last hilted and pommelled Or and in his sinister a Fleur-de-lys Azure.
Or a Lion rampant Gules couped at all his joints if the field within the Royal Tressure Azure in a Dexter Canton Argent a Saltire Azure surmounted of an Inescutcheon Or charged with a Lion rampant within a Double Tressure flory counterflory Gules; behind the shield on Staffs in saltire proper two representations of the Sovereign's National Flag of Scotland (Cross of St Andrew) fringed Or roped and tasseled of the last (Insignia of Office of the Bearer for the Sovereign of the Sovereign's National Flag of Scotland).
On either side an Eagle proper.
Consilio Et Animis (By wisdom and courage).
The Arms of the Earls of Lauderdale are canting as they represent a mutilated lion, forming a pun on the name Maitland; as Hereditary National Flag Bearers, the Earls of Lauderdale are entitled to use the Banner of Scotland in their Arms.


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