1st Baron Berkeley or 6th Lord Berkeley? [closed]

+5 votes

A question came up about James... 1st Baron Berkeley or 6th Lord Berkeley? His title in the datafield says 1st Baron Berkeley - based on his Wikipedia article (by the citation in the profile). He is 6th Lord Berkeley in Richardson's Magna Carta Ancestry and Royal Ancestry.

EuroAristo name field guidelines say you may include the number with the title, or not, in the "Other Nicknames" datafield. (Cymru guidelines say to omit the numbers; while James was born in Wales, I think the Berkeley title was English.)

So. If I omitted the number in the Other Nicknames datafield, would it be ok to say just Lord Berkeley (following Richardson, per Magna Carta project guidelines)? Is Baron higher than Lord? If so, then I would think the highest title should be in the datafield, but I'm concerned that Richardson didn't call him Baron.


Wikipedia says "He was made heir to his uncle Thomas de Berkeley, 5th Baron Berkeley." but also shows (in the succession box):

Peerage of England
Preceded by
New Creation
Baron Berkeley
Succeeded by
William Berkeley

thepeerage.com, citing Burke's, also calls him "1st Baron Berkeley." Douglas Richardson calls him "6th Lord Berkeley", apparently also citing Burke's (no mention of Baron that I saw).

Since I'm editing the profile to be part of a Magna Carta trail, I think that Lord Berkeley (following Richardson) would be preferred.

The the datafield would have "Lord Berkeley", but both 1st Baron Berkeley and 6th Lord Berkeley would be in the text of his biography under "Title" as they are now.

Is that OK?

WikiTree profile: James Berkeley
closed with the note: Question answered
in Genealogy Help by Liz Shifflett G2G6 Pilot (464k points)
closed by Darlene Athey-Hill

I love how WikiTree lists related questions... I see I asked this same question about later "Barons Berkeley" - and selected John Atkinson's reply as best answer. It seems to still be best answer, so going with Lord Berkeley should be ok.

https://www.wikitree.com/g2g/141075/lord-berkeley-baron-berkeley-are-different-titles-arent-they?show=141126#a141126 ... in part: "In this instance Baron and Lord are interchangeable."

any suggestions on why http://www.stmarys-berkeley.co.uk/monuments.html calls him 11th Lord Berkeley?

They're probably counting the "feudal barons"




Someone may be able to explain this better, but I think there were different ways of being considered a Lord in the medieval period.

You could be a Feudal Lord of Berkeley because you were granted the Castle of Berkeley and in The Complete Peerage, 2nd ed., vol. 2, p. 124 that is how the first 5 Lords are described starting with Robert FitzHarding.

Then there was a Barony by Writ, when Thomas de Berkeley was summoned to Parliament by writ, whereby he is held to have become Lord Berkeley, which accounts for the next five Barons/Lords.

James is considered the 11th Lord, because he is the 11th to have held the Castle of Berkeley, sometimes the 6th because he is the 6th Baron by Writ, but because he was the nephew of the previous Baron and not his son, he is also considered the 1st Baron by Writ (starting the numbering all over again).

No wonder sometimes it's just as easy to leave the number off and just call him Lord Berkeley.


Thanks John! And my eyes didn't glaze over :D

1 Answer

+4 votes
Best answer
Well, John and RJ commented as opposed to answering.  So I will say kudos to them in this answer, and then close the question!  And the discussion above is why we prefer to leave off the number with the title . . .  ;)
by Darlene Athey-Hill G2G6 Pilot (436k points)
selected by Liz Shifflett

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