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Marquess of Abergavenny

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Marquessate of Abergavenny

Arms of the Marquess of Abergavenny
Arms : Gules, a saltire argent charged with a rose of the field barbed and seeded proper. Crest: Out of a Ducal Coronet Or, a Bull's Head proper, charged with a Rose Gules. Supporters: On either side a Bull Argent, pied Sable, armed unguled collared and chained Or, the latter terminating in a Staple Or
Creation date14 January 1876
Created byQueen Victoria
PeeragePeerage of the United Kingdom
First holderWilliam Nevill, 5th Earl of Abergavenny
Present holderChristopher Nevill, 6th Marquess of Abergavenny
Heir apparentNone
Remainder tothe 1st Marquess's heirs male of the body lawfully begotten.
Subsidiary titlesEarl of Abergavenny
Earl of Lewes
Viscount Nevill
Baron Bergavenny (until 1938)
Seat(s)Eridge Park
Former seat(s)Kidbrooke Park
Birling Manor
(Wish not wickedly)

Marquess of Abergavenny (pronounced Abergenny) in the County of Monmouth, is a title in the Peerage of the United Kingdom created on 14 January 1876, along with the title Earl of Lewes (pronounced "Lewis"), in the County of Sussex,[1] for the 5th Earl of Abergavenny, a member of the Nevill family.

The 6th and present Marquess is Christopher George Charles Nevill (b. 23 April 1955), son of Lord Rupert Nevill and Lady Anne Camilla Evelyn Wallop. He succeeded to the title in 2000 on the death of his uncle the 5th Marquess, who had no surviving sons.

The family seat is Eridge Park, near Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent.


Medieval origins[edit]

The incumbent Marquess of Abergavenny is the current head of the House of Neville, a noble house of early medieval origins, notable for its central role in the Wars of the Roses.[2] Lord Abergavenny's ancestor, Edward Neville, 3rd Baron Bergavenny, was a younger son of Ralph Neville, 1st Earl of Westmorland, and Lady Joan Beaufort, daughter of John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster. Abergavenny in the Marquess's title derives from the market town in Wales in which this branch of the Nevill family inherited Abergavenny Castle, much of the family's ancestral lands and title of Baron Bergavenny by virtue of the marriage between the suo jure peeress Elizabeth de Beauchamp, Baroness Bergavenny, and Edward Neville in 1424.[citation needed]

Subsidiary titles[edit]

Subsequent Nevill Barons Bergavenny have been raised to higher ranks within the peerage. The 1st Marquess's ancestor, the de facto 17th (de jure 2nd) Baron Bergavenny, was created Earl of Abergavenny, in the County of Monmouth, and Viscount Nevill, of Birling in the County of Kent, in the Peerage of Great Britain on 17 May 1784.[3] The Barony of Bergavenny was held by his successors, the Earls and Marquesses of Abergavenny, until 1938, when it passed into abeyance between the two daughters of the 3rd Marquess. The 5th Earl of Abergavenny was elevated to the title of Marquess of Abergavenny along with the subsidiary title of Earl of Lewes on 14 January 1876, following his role in the foundation of the modern day Conservative Party with Disraeli and Lord Salisbury.[4][5]

Coat of arms[edit]

The heraldic blazon for the coat of arms of the Marquesses of Abergavenny is: Gules, a saltire argent charged with a rose of the field (barbed and seeded proper).[6] These are the ancient arms of Neville differenced by a rose, the symbol of a 7th son, in reference to Sir Edward Neville, 1st Baron Bergavenny (d.1476), 7th son of Ralph Neville, 1st Earl of Westmorland. The blazon can be translated as "On a red background, a white saltire with a red rose, naturally coloured, upon it."

Earl of Abergavenny (1784)[edit]

Other titles (1st Earl onwards): Viscount Nevill (GB 1784), Baron Bergavenny (GB 1724)
William Nevill, 5th Earl of Abergavenny (later the 1st Marquess), 'The Tory Bloodhound', depicted in a caricature by Ape published in the June edition of Vanity Fair in 1875.

Marquess of Abergavenny (1876)[edit]

Other titles (1st Marquess onwards): Viscount Nevill (GB 1784), Earl of Lewes (UK 1876)
Other titles (1st–3rd Marquesses): Baron Bergavenny (GB 1724, abeyant 1938)

There are no heirs to the marquessate; the heir presumptive to the earldom is the present marquess's third cousin, David Michael Ralph Nevill (b. 1941)[7]

Family tree and line of succession[edit]

Line of succession to the earldom of Abergavenny [8][7]
  • William Nevill, 4th Earl of Abergavenny (1792–1868)
    • William Nevill, 1st Marquess of Abergavenny (1826–1915)
    • Hon. Ralph Pelham Nevill (1832–1914)
      • Percy Llewelyn Nevill (1877–1927)
        • Michael George Ralph Nevill (1917–1943)
          • (1) David Michael Ralph Nevill (b. 1941)
            • (2) Guy Michael Rossmore Nevill (b. 1973)
              • (3) George David Roland Nevill (b. 2010)
              • (4) Frederick Guy James Nevill (b. 2012)
              • (5) Ralph William James Nevill (b. 2015)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "No. 24283". The London Gazette. 11 January 1876. p. 99.
  2. ^ Hicks. The Wars of the Roses: 1455-1485. Osprey Publishing Limited. pp. 105–112.
  3. ^ "No. 12541". The London Gazette. 11 May 1784. p. 1.
  4. ^ Harris. The Conservatives: A History. Random House, 2013. pp. 131–132.
  5. ^ "Abergavenny Chronicle And Monmouthshire Chronicle Advertiser". 17 December 1915.
  6. ^ Blazon per Debrett's Peerage, 1968, which gives no tinctures for rose, which are however given as stated in brackets for Neville Barons Braybrooke
  7. ^ a b Morris, Susan; Bosberry-Scott, Wendy; Belfield, Gervase, eds. (2019). "Abergavenny". Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage. Vol. 1 (150th ed.). London: Debrett's Ltd. pp. 270–274. ISBN 978-1-9997-6705-1.
  8. ^ Mosley, Charles, ed. (1999). "Abergavenny". Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage, Baronetage and Knightage. Vol. 1 (106th ed.). Crans, Switzerland: Burke's Peerage (Genealogical Books) Ltd. pp. 11–20. ISBN 2-9400-8502-1.