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Titled Elizabethans: A Directory of Elizabethan Court, State and Church Officers

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Jane A Lawson
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In the following list, peerages are English unless designated by (I) for Irish or (S) for Scottish. The dignities rank in the following order of ascendancy: Baron/Baroness, Viscount/Viscountess, Earl/Countess, Marquess/Lady Marquess, Duke/Duchess. For other creations of the dignity, please refer to Cokayne Complete Peerage, A widowed peeress continued to hold her title until death unless she married a peer of a higher rank. A widowed peeress became a dowager if and when her eldest son and heir married, to differentiate her from the new peeress. Therefore the Countess of Leicester did not become a Dowager Countess, and Helena Lady Marquess of Northampton did not become the Dowager Lady Marquess. The entries for female peers include details of their previous and subsequent spouses. Pronouns are supplied with their death dates in these entries when the referents may be unclear.