Posted by The Mysterious H.C. on August 25, 1998 at 11:03:37:
In response to Females inheriting titles, written by Linden on August 25, 1998 at 02:47:18
] ]... only a very few baronetcies (those created in Scotland before 1707, and called "Nova Scotia" baronetcies) allow women to succeed in any circumstances.
] In general, almost no English titles go through the female line (there were one or two notable exceptions). If the original holder of the title has no inheritors in completely male descent (sons of sons of sons) then the title just dies out.
] Scottish titles are different: they can descend through the female line (eg sons of daughters of daughters), which is why, when a bus conductor in Jamaica (or the like) is discovered to be the heir to the lordship of Dwyle Flunking, it is almost always a Scottish title.
That's not really true; firstly, the succession to aristocratic titles is governed by the wording of the individual royal "Letters Patent" which created that particular title; for most English titles, the wording is "heirs male" (which doesn't allow female succession in any circumstances), but it could be "heirs general" (which does, in some circumstances), or it could allow specific "remainders" to the descendents of specific named relatives, which might include the sister or daughter etc. of the original grantee. Many baronies, however, don't have letters patent associated with them, so that for these titles (there's a special term for them now, which I forget), succession occurs in basically the same way as for a standard entail (see http://www.pemberley.com/janeinfo/pptopic2.html#entail), except where an entail has a "co-heiressship", such a barony goes into "abeyance". There are also a few viscounties and one earldom (I seem to remember) which descend in this way.
What's was different about (some) Scottish titles was that if the titleholder left only a daughter or daughters, then the eldest daughter could succeed to the title even if the titleholder had junior male-line relatives (such as a younger brother) still living; few or no English titles work that way, except (ironically), the monarchy itself (which was why Victoria and Elizabeth 2nd succeeded...)
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