Q:

What is the difference between a duke and an earl?

A:

Quick Answer

The main difference between a duke and an earl is that a duke is of a higher rank than an earl. The duke is ranked third in the royal hierarchy, under the prince and ruling monarch, whereas an earl is generally ranked sixth.

Continue Reading
What is the difference between a duke and an earl?
Credit: Chris Jackson / Staff Getty Images Entertainment Getty Images

Full Answer

A duke is the most senior noble and is generally not a member of the royal family. The word duke comes from the Latin term dux which means leader or commander. Traditionally, dukes were appointed by the king as leader of a specific territory, acting as a delegate to uphold the king's law. The title of duke is hereditary.

The terms earl and count are used interchangeably and stand for the same noble title. An earl is a member of intermediate nobility. In both the Western and Eastern Roman Empires, this title referred to a military commander in charge of a large number of people. During the Middle Ages and after, the title and duties associated with it became more vague. In Anglo-Saxon England, earls acted as landlords, collected taxes and exercised judicial power over the villages under their control. The English Monarchy created the earl system to preserve the royal hierarchy while still being able to enforce law. Generally, earls were appointed by the king, though the title was passed to an heir with the king's approval. Earls in modern times are a more ambiguous member of the nobility that often acts an advisior of sorts to the current monarch.

Learn more about Types of Government

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are the characteristics of a Communist economy?

    A:

    In a Communist economy, the government owns most of the means of production and will determine the allocation and provision of resources, products and services. In practice, this has led to the diversion of economic resources from the people, or consumers, to the industrial and military sectors.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What type of government does Russia have?

    A:

    In 1991, after the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics' dissolution, Russia began transitioning to self rule as the Russian Federation. The new government adopted its constitution on Dec. 12, 1993. However, the exact distribution of authority among local leaders, regional leaders and the central government continues to evolve.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the definition of coercive federalism?

    A:

    Coercive federalism involves a strong centralized national government that exercises strict control over its states through the use of mandates or orders, often without providing the funding to carry out those requirements. In order to receive grant funding from the federal government, the states have to carry out the mandates first. This is a form of governance that the United States has followed on some issues since the 1960s, such as the environment and publicly funded education.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Who is Ontario's provincial representative?

    A:

    As of 2014, Ontario's provincial representatives in the federal parliament of Canada are John Baird, Diane Finley and Joe Oliver. Baird represents the eastern and northern regions of Ontario, Finley represents the southwestern region and Oliver is the Central Ontario and GTA representative.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore