Duke of Cambridge

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Dukedom of Cambridge
5th Creation
Coat of Arms of William, Duke of Cambridge.svg
Creation date 29 April 2011
Monarch Elizabeth II
Peerage Peerage of the United Kingdom
Present holder Prince William
Heir apparent Prince George
Remainder to the 1st Duke's heirs male of the body lawfully begotten
Subsidiary titles Earl of Strathearn
Baron Carrickfergus
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

Duke of Cambridge, one of several royal dukedoms in the United Kingdom, is a hereditary title of specific rank of nobility in the British Royal Family. The title (named after the city of Cambridge in England) is hereditary among male agnatic descendants of the titleholder by primogeniture, and has been conferred upon members of the British royal family several times. The wife of the titleholder is called Duchess of Cambridge.

The title goes back to the 17th century, and superseded an earlier title of Earl of Cambridge, the title became extinct several times, before being revived after a hiatus of over a hundred years in 2011, when it was bestowed upon Prince William on 29 April 2011 upon his marriage on the same day to Catherine Elizabeth Middleton.


The title was first granted to Charles (1660–1661), the first son of the Duke of York (later King James II), though he was never formally created Duke of Cambridge because he had died at the age of six months, the first officially recognised creation of the dukedom was in the Peerage of England in 1664, when James Stuart, second son of the Duke of York, was granted the title, but he died early in 1667 at the age of three, and the title again became extinct. The title was then granted later that year to the third son of the Duke of York, Edgar, but he then died in 1671 at the age of three, and the title again became extinct, the Duke of York's eldest son by his second wife, Charles, was also styled Duke of Cambridge in 1677, but died when about a month old, not having lived long enough to be formally created duke.

The title was recreated in 1706 and granted to George Augustus, son of the Elector of Hanover (later King George I). When George Augustus ascended to the throne as King George II in 1727, the dukedom merged with the crown.[1]

The title was again recreated and given, in the Peerage of the United Kingdom, to Prince Adolphus, the seventh son of King George III,[2] the title was inherited in 1850 by his only son, Prince George. George had legitimate issue, but they were barred from inherriting the title as his marriage was in violation of the Royal Marriages Act 1772, so that his death in 1904, the title again became extinct.[3]

The grandson (though a female line) of the first duke of the fourth creation, Adolphus, Duke of Teck, the brother-in-law of King George V, was created Marquess of Cambridge (including Earl of Eltham, and Viscount Northallerton) in 1917 when he gave up his German titles and took the surname "Cambridge".[4] Upon the death of the second Marquess without any male heirs, the marquessate became extinct.

During the period leading up to the 1999 wedding of The Prince Edward, the youngest son of Queen Elizabeth II, experts speculated that the dukedom of Cambridge or Sussex were the most likely to be granted to him, and The Sunday Telegraph later reported that Prince Edward was at one point set to be titled Duke of Cambridge.[5] Instead, Prince Edward was created Earl of Wessex, and it was announced that he would eventually be created the next Duke of Edinburgh after his father.[6]

On 29 April 2011, the day of his wedding, it was announced that Prince William was to be created Duke of Cambridge, Earl of Strathearn and Baron Carrickfergus,[1] the letters patent granting these titles received the great seal on 26 May 2011.[7]

Dukes of Cambridge[edit]

Styled, 1660[edit]

Duke Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Charles Stuart
House of Stuart
no portrait 22 October 1660
Worcester House, London
son of King James II, and Anne Hyde
not married 5 May 1661

First creation, 1664[edit]

Duke Portrait Birth Marriages Death
James Stuart
House of Stuart
also: Earl of Cambridge and Baron of Dauntsey (1664)
James Stuart 12 July 1663
son of King James II and Anne Hyde
not married 20 June 1667

Second creation, 1667[edit]

Duke Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Edgar Stuart
House of Stuart
also: Earl of Cambridge and Baron of Dauntsey (16671)
no portrait 14 September 1667
son of King James II and Anne Hyde
not married 8 June 1671

Styled, 1677[edit]

Duke Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Charles Stuart
House of Stuart
no portrait 7 November 1677
son of King James II and Queen Mary
not married 12 December 1677

Third creation, 1706[edit]

Duke Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Prince George
House of Hanover
also: Marquess of Cambridge, Earl of Milford Haven, Viscount Northallerton and Baron Tewkesbury (1706);
Prince of Wales and Earl of Chester (1714), Duke of Cornwall (1337), Duke of Rothesay, Earl of Carrick and Baron of Renfrew (1398), Lord of the Isles and Prince and Great Steward of Scotland (1714)
Prince George Augustus 30 October / 9 November 1683O.S./N.S.
son of King George I, and Sophia Dorothea of Celle
22 August 1705
Caroline of Ansbach
10 children
25 October 1760
Prince George succeeded as George II in 1727 upon his father's death, and his titles merged with the crown.

Fourth creation, 1801[edit]

Duke Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Prince Adolphus
House of Hanover
also: Earl of Tipperary and Baron Culloden (1801)
Prince Adolphus 24 February 1774
son of King George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
18 June 1818
Princess Augusta of Hesse-Kassel
3 children
8 July 1850
Prince George
House of Hanover
also: Earl of Tipperary and Baron Culloden (1801)
Prince George 26 March 1819
son of Prince Adolphus, and Princess Augusta
8 January 1847
Sarah Fairbrother
3 children
17 March 1904
Prince George's marriage to Sarah Fairbrother which produced three sons, but due to the Royal Marriages Act 1772 the marriage was invalid and all his titles became extinct on his death.

Fifth creation, 2011[edit]

Duke Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Prince William
House of Windsor
also: Earl of Strathearn and Baron Carrickfergus (2011)
Prince William 21 June 1982
son of Charles, Prince of Wales, and Lady Diana Spencer
29 April 2011
Catherine Middleton
2 children

Line of succession[edit]

The heir apparent to the extant dukedom and the subsidiary titles is the son of Prince William, Prince George of Cambridge (born 2013).

Marquesses of Cambridge (1917–1981)[edit]

Family tree[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Announcement of Titles: Statement issued by the press secretary to The Queen". The Royal Household. 29 April 2011. Archived from the original on 30 April 2011. Retrieved 2012-04-30. 
  2. ^ "No. 15429". The London Gazette. 21 November 1801. p. 1403. 
  3. ^ Tim Ross (16 November 2010). "Could William and Kate be the next Duke and Duchess of Cambridge?". The Telegraph. telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 11 February 2012. 
  4. ^ "No. 30374". The London Gazette. 9 November 1917. pp. 11592–11594. 
  5. ^ Richard Eden (12 December 2010). "Royal wedding: Prince William asks the Queen not to make him a duke". The Telegraph. telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 12 December 2010. 
  6. ^ "The Earl of Wessex-Styles and Titles". The Royal Household. Retrieved 2012-04-30. 
  7. ^ "No. 59798". The London Gazette. 1 June 2011. p. 10297.