Earl Erne

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Coronet of a British Earl.svg
Arms of the Earl Erne
Arms: Argent, a Lion rampant Azure. Crest: A Dragon's Head couped Vert, emitting fire from the mouth and ears proper. Supporters: On either side a Lion Azure, crowned with an Earl's Coronet proper.
Creation date19 August 1789
MonarchGeorge III
PeeragePeerage of Ireland
First holderJohn Creighton, 2nd Baron Erne
Present holderJohn Crichton, 7th Earl Erne
Heir presumptiveCharles Crichton
Remainder toThe 1st Earl's heirs male of the body lawfully begotten
Subsidiary titlesViscount Erne
Baron Erne
Baron Fermanagh
Seat(s)Crom Castle

Earl Erne, of Crom Castle in the County of Fermanagh, is a title in the Peerage of Ireland. It was created in 1789 for John Creighton, 2nd Baron Erne,[1] who had earlier represented Lifford (Parliament of Ireland constituency) in the Irish House of Commons. He had already been made Viscount Erne, of Crom Castle in the County of Fermanagh, in 1781,[2] also in the Peerage of Ireland, and sat from 1800 to 1828 as an Irish Representative Peer in the British House of Lords. The title of Baron Erne, of Crom Castle in the County of Fermanagh, was created in the Peerage of Ireland in 1768 for his father Abraham Creighton. The Earl was succeeded by his eldest son, the second Earl. On his death the titles passed to his nephew, the third Earl. He was an Irish Representative Peer from 1845 to 1885 and also served as Lord Lieutenant of County Fermanagh during the same period. In 1876 he was created Baron Fermanagh, of Lisnaskea in the County of Fermanagh, in the Peerage of the United Kingdom.[3] This was to allow the Earls to sit in the House of Lords by right, rather than having to stand for election as Representative Peers. An earlier title of Baroness Fermanagh in the Peerage of Ireland was created for Mary Verney on 13 June 1792, but became extinct on her death on 15 November 1810.

Lord Erne also changed the spelling of the family surname from Creighton to Crichton. He was succeeded by his son, the fourth Earl. He was a Conservative politician and served as a Lord of the Treasury in the second Conservative administration of Benjamin Disraeli. Like his father he was also Lord Lieutenant of County Fermanagh. His grandson, the fifth Earl, held minor office from 1936 to 1939 in the National Government led by Stanley Baldwin and later Neville Chamberlain. Lord Erne was killed in the Second World War. The 6th Earl (often known as Harry Erne), who succeeded in 1940, was the Lord Lieutenant of County Fermanagh from 1986 until 2012. On his death in 2015, he was succeeded by his only son, the 7th Earl.

The 3rd Earl is also remembered as the employer of Captain Charles Boycott, whose mishandling of relations with agricultural workers on Lord Erne's estate in County Mayo caused a political and public order crisis and provoked the strategy that gave the English language the term to boycott.

The invented title of Viscount Crichton is used as a courtesy title for the Earl's heir apparent.

The family seat is Crom Castle, near Newtownbutler, County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland.

Barons Erne (1768)[edit]

Viscounts Erne (1781)[edit]

Earls Erne (1789)[edit]

The heir presumptive is the present holder's second cousin once removed, Charles David Blayney Crichton (born 1953).
The heir presumptive's heir apparent is his son, Oliver Charles Martin Crichton (born 1995).

Male-line family tree[edit]


  1. ^ "No. 13124". The London Gazette. 22 August 1789. p. 557.
  2. ^ "No. 12146". The London Gazette. 23 December 1780. p. 1.
  3. ^ "No. 24283". The London Gazette. 11 January 1876. p. 99.