Duke of Aubigny
Last updated on 4 September 2017
Duke of Aubigny was a title in the Peerage of France, held by Scottish noblemen. The Scottish Dukes of Aubigny (French: Ducs d'Aubigny) had their origins in Aubigny-sur-Nère, France, from the 15th century, which was an important honour throughout the Auld Alliance and Ancien Régime. Its importance was gradually displaced for the ducal title of Clan Gordon (see Duke of Gordon), during a long and turbulent period between the French Revolution and French Third Republic.
The titleholder of this land was originally called Seigneur d'Aubigny and was conferred upon the House of Stewart's cadet branch, Stuart of Darnley.
The first ducal holder was Louise de Kérouaille, who in 1684 was created Duchess of Aubigny in the Peerage of France at the request of Charles II, King of England and Scotland; her son by Charles, Charles Lennox, 1st Duke of Richmond, was jointly ennobled with her. However the letters patents creating the Duchy were not registered by the Paris Parliament, so the Dukedom became extinct at the Duchess' death in 1734. In 1777 King Louis XV issued lettres de suranation which restored the 1684 peerage to the heirs of Duchess Louise. The 2nd Duke of Richmond had already received a brevet de duc, which gave him the honours of a Duke at the Court. The Duchy was confiscated during Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars (1792-1803 and 1806-1814), but finally returned to Charles Lennox, 4th Duke of Richmond. The 4th Duke was the nephew of the 3rd Duke, so his succession to the Dukedom of Aubigny is according to ancient Salic Law, thus the Dukes of Richmond and Lennox have since used this title.
The arms of the Lennox Dukes of Aubigny exhibit an inescutcheon gules, three buckles or which stand for the Duchy of Aubigny. These arms are in fact derived from the arms of the Stewart of Darnley lords of Aubigny. As descendants to the Stewarts of Bonkyl, they bore a fess chequy Azure and Argent, a bordure gules with buckles or (an example of canting arms: buckles for Bonkyl). In 1428 John Stewart of Aubigny was awarded the right to incorporate the arms of France (azure, three fleur-de-lys or) into his coat of arms. His descendants quartered France with Stewart.
Property concerning the Château of Aubigny is no longer in the possession of the title-bearers, sold off in order to maintain the Dukes' personal finances within the UK itself. Aubigny is the chief tourist attraction in France which attests to the Auld Alliance, the honour now only an historic title.
Stewart Lords of Aubigny
- John Stewart, 1st Lord of Aubigny (killed 1429)
- John Stewart, 2nd Lord of Aubigny (died 1482)
- Bernard Stewart, Lord of Aubigny (died 1508)
- Robert Stewart, Lord of Aubigny (died 1543)
- John Stewart, 5th Lord of Aubigny (died 1567)
- Esmé Stewart, 1st Duke of Lennox, 6th Lord of Aubigny (died 1583)
- Esmé Stewart, 3rd Duke of Lennox, 7th Lord of Aubigny (died 1624)
- Henry Stewart, 8th Seigneur d'Aubigny (died 1632)
- George Stewart, 9th Seigneur d'Aubigny (killed 1642)
- Ludovic Stewart, 10th Seigneur d'Aubigny (died 1665)
- Charles Stewart, 3rd Duke of Richmond, 11th Lord of Aubigny (died 1672)
Dukes of Aubigny
- Louise de Kérouaille, 1st Duchess of Portsmouth, Duchess of Aubigny (1649-1734). Dukedom and Peerage extinct at her death.
- Charles Lennox, 1st Duke of Richmond, 1st Duke of Lennox, Duke of Aubigny (1672-1723), jointly with his mother Louise de Kéroualle.
- Charles Lennox, 2nd Duke of Richmond, 2nd Duke of Lennox (1701-1750. Only a "Brevet Duke" and not a Duke and Peer.
- Charles Lennox, 3rd Duke of Richmond, 3rd Duke of Lennox, Duke of Aubigny (1734-1806). Restored to Peerage in 1777.
- Charles Lennox, 4th Duke of Richmond, 4th Duke of Lennox, Duke of Aubigny (1764-1819)
- Charles Gordon-Lennox, 5th Duke of Richmond, 5th Duke of Lennox, Duke of Aubigny (1791-1860)
- Charles Henry Gordon-Lennox, 6th Duke of Richmond, 6th Duke of Lennox, Duke of Aubigny, 1st Duke of Gordon (1818-1903)
- Charles Henry Gordon-Lennox, 7th Duke of Richmond, 7th Duke of Lennox, Duke of Aubigny, 2nd Duke of Gordon (1845-1928)
- Charles Henry Gordon-Lennox, 8th Duke of Richmond, 8th Duke of Lennox, Duke of Aubigny, 3rd Duke of Gordon (1870-1935)
- Frederick Charles Gordon-Lennox, 9th Duke of Richmond, 9th Duke of Lennox, Duke of Aubigny, 4th Duke of Gordon (1904-1989)
- Charles Henry Gordon-Lennox, 10th Duke of Richmond, 10th Duke of Lennox, Duke of Aubigny, 5th Duke of Gordon (1929-2017)
- Charles Gordon-Lennox, 11th Duke of Richmond, 11th Duke of Lennox, Duke of Aubigny, 6th Duke of Gordon (b. 1955)
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