Earl of Northumbria

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Earl of Northumbria was a title in the Anglo-Danish, late Anglo-Saxon, and early Anglo-Norman period in England. The earldom of Northumbria was the successor of the earldom of Bamburgh. In the seventh century, the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of Bernicia and Deira were united in the kingdom of Northumbria, but this was destroyed by the Vikings in 867. Southern Northumbria, the former Deira, then became the Viking kingdom of York, while English earls ruled the former northern kingdom of Bernicia from their base at Bamburgh. The northern part of Bernicia was lost to the Scots, probably in the late tenth century. In 1006 Uhtred the Bold was earl of Bamburgh, and Æthelred the Unready appointed him earl of York as well, re-uniting the area of Northumbria still under English control into a single earldom. Uhtred was murdered in 1016, and Cnut then appointed Eric of Hlathir earl of Northumbria at York, but Uhtred's dynasty held onto Bernicia until 1041, when the earldom was again united. A descendant of Uhtred, Gospatric, was appointed earl by William the Conqueror in 1067, but William expelled him in 1072. Gospatric was then given lands in Scotland, and his descendants became earls of Dunbar. [1] Northumbria was divided again in the early Norman period and dissolved into the earldoms of York and Northumberland, with much land going to Northumberland's autonomous liberties, including the County Palatine of Durham and Liberty of Tynedale.


Title holders

Vacant during the Harrying of the North until...

Vacant until Stephen was pressured by David of Scotland to grant to ...

Purchased by Hugh de Puiset, the Bishop of Durham in 1189, and held until 1191 or so. [3]

Vacant until the First Barons' War, when the barons of Northumberland and York did homage to ...

See also


  1. Aird, William M. (2004). "Gospatric, earl of Northumbria (d. 1073x5)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/11110 . Retrieved 25 August 2013.(subscription or UK public library membership required)
  2. The Complete Peerage . London: The St. Catherine Press. 1936. pp. 9:704–5.
  3. Barlow, Frank (1988). The Feudal Kingdom of England 1042–1216 (Fourth ed.). New York: Longman. p. 352. ISBN   0-582-49504-0.

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