Earldom of Portarlington
Arms of the Earl of Portarlington
Arms: Quarterly: 1st & 4th, Barry nebuly of six Argent and Gules, over all a Bend engrailed Azure (for Damer); 2nd & 3rd, Azure, a Chevron Ermine, between three Arrows palewise points downwards Or, barbed and flighted proper, on a Chief Argent, three Martlets Sable, a Canton Gules, charged with a Mullet Or (for Dawson). Crests: 1st, Out of a Mural Crown Or, a Talbot’s Head Azure, eared Gold (for Damer); 2nd, A Cat’s Head affrontée erased near the shoulders, of a Tabby colour, holding in the mouth a Rat Sable (for Dawson). Supporters: On either side an Heraldic Tiger proper.
Creation date21 June 1785
Created byGeorges III
PeeragePeerage of Ireland
First holderJohn Dawson, 2nd Viscount Carlow
Present holderGeorge Dawson-Damer, 7th Earl of Portarlington
Heir apparentCharles Dawson, Viscount Carlow
Remainder toThe 1st Earl’s heirs male of the body lawfully begotten
Subsidiary titlesViscount Carlow
Baron Dawson
Seat(s)Gledswood House
Former seat(s)Emo Court
(Virtue is the way of life)
Emo Court, the former seat of the Earls of Portarlington.

Earl of Portarlington is a title in the Peerage of Ireland.[1] It was created in 1785 for John Dawson, 2nd Viscount Carlow, who had earlier represented Portarlington in the Irish House of Commons. He was the son of William Dawson, 1st Viscount Carlow, who had represented Portarlington and Queen's County in the Irish House of Commons, and had been created Baron Dawson, of Dawson's Court in the Queen's County, in 1770, and Viscount Carlow, in the County of Carlow, in 1776.[2] These titles were also in the Peerage of Ireland. The first Earl was succeeded by his eldest son, the second Earl. He was a Colonel in the 23rd Light Dragoons but disappeared the night before the Battle of Waterloo and thus missed the start of the battle. He then attached himself to the 18th Hussars, but after the battle was forced to resign his commission in disgrace, fell into dissipation and 'died in an obscure London slum'.[3]

He never married and was succeeded by his nephew, the third Earl. He was the son of Captain the Hon. Henry Dawson, second son of the first Earl, who had assumed by Sign Manual the additional surname of Damer on inheriting the large Milton Abbey estate in Dorset from his aunt Lady Caroline Damer. Lord Portarlington sat in the House of Lords as an Irish representative peer from 1855 to 1889.

On his death the titles passed to his cousin, the fourth Earl. He was the son of Colonel the Hon. George Dawson-Damer, third son of the first Earl. Lord Portarlington represented Portarlington in the House of Commons as a Conservative. He was succeeded by his son, the fifth Earl. He was an Irish Representative Peer from 1896 to 1900. As of 2014 the titles are held by his great-grandson, the seventh Earl, who succeeded his grandfather in 1959. He is the son of George Lionel Seymour Dawson-Damer, Viscount Carlow, proprietor of the Corvinus Press, who was killed in action in 1944.

The family seat is Gledswood House, near Melrose, Roxburghshire. The former family seat was Emo Court, near Emo, County Laois.

Viscounts Carlow (1776)

Earls of Portarlington (1785)

Present peer

George Dawson-Damer, 7th Earl of Portarlington (born 10 August 1938) is the elder son of Air Commodore George Lionel Seymour Dawson-Damer, Viscount Carlow, and his wife Peggy Cambie. He was educated at Eton College and was Page of Honour to Queen Elizabeth II between April 1953 and February 1955.[5] In 1956 he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant into the Irish Guards. On 4 July 1959 he succeeded to the peerages. In 1965 he was a director of G. S. Yuill and Company in Sydney, Australia.[5]

On 26 July 1961 he married Davinia Windley, a daughter of Sir Edward Henry Windley and Patience Ann Sergison-Brooke, and they had four children:[5]

The heir apparent is the present holder's eldest son, whose heir apparent is his son Henry Dawson-Damer (born 2009).

See also


This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.Find sources: "Earl of Portarlington" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (February 2013) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
  1. ^ "No. 12661". The London Gazette. 2 July 1785. p. 322.
  2. ^ "No. 11679". The London Gazette. 29 June 1776. p. 1.
  3. ^ Cornwell, Bernard (2014). Waterloo: The History of Four Days, Three Armies, and Three Battles. New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers. p. 335. ISBN 978-0-06-231205-1.
  4. ^ "Alumni Dublinenses : a register of the students, graduates, professors and provosts of Trinity College in the University of Dublin (1593–1860George Dames Burtchaell/Thomas Ulick Sadleir p217: Dublin, Alex Thom and Co, 1935
  5. ^ a b c Burke's Peerage, volume 3 (2003), p. 3179