If you are a member of an association represented at the CILANE, we invite you to fill out the registration form to request access on the website.
The request will be processed by your association.
The Verband der Baltischen Ritterschaften is represented in CILANE through the Vereinigung der Deutschen Adelsverbände.
When filling in the registration form, select the VdDA as your association.
If you have been a member of JNE, your registration will be carried forward and remain valid.
If you are a grande or título, an introduction from the Secretary of the Diputación is all that is required to accompany your request.
There is guest status for members of the Austrian nobility, verified through the Deutsches Adelsrechtausschuss.
There is also a youth group.
If this is your situation, you are welcome to fill out your registration form on the website.
There is no member association representing the Czech nobility,
but many families with Bohemian nobility in practice also have Austrian nobility, and members of these families may register following the guest arrangement for Austria.
There is guest status for members of the Polish nobility who can meet the standards of proof for Grace and Devotion in the Polish Association of the Order of Malta.
There is also a small youth group.
If this is your situation, you are welcome to fill out your registration form on the website.
If you live in a country that is not represented, but your nobility comes from one that is, we invite you to contact that national association to see if you are entitled to register on our website.
If there is no affiliated association in CILANE for your nobility, this may be because the nobility of your country has no association, or because the association does not conform to the norms of CILANE.
Note that it may be the case, as a result of border changes, that a country with a historic nobility no longer exists within its old borders but its territory is divided between a number of states where nobility is not legally recognised.
In such a situation, except where there were autonomous corporate noble structures recognised in public law, the historic nobility should be represented in a single association. Please fill out our contact form.
Unless your family received a formal recognition of nobility after naturalisation, you should join the association representing the nobility of the country where your nobility originated.
Some member associations will however accept you as a member where you are a resident. In this case your nobility must first be validated by the member association representing the nobility of your own country.
CILANE cannot accept grants of titles, nobility or decorations unless made by a sovereign state to one of its own nationals.
Moreover, neither CILANE nor its Member Associations are able to accept sales or purported sales of titles or nobility.
There are websites purporting to sell titles of nobility, but these have no validity in public law, and CILANE does not support them.
The name of CILANE has been added without permission.
Nobility is not linked to the ownership of land.
Historically in some countries, titles were attached to a fief (in France, a fief de dignité, which might have been formally ‘erected’ into a barony, county, marquisate or duchy, for example). In all such cases, however, a royal license followed by homage and reinvestiture was necessary in the case of a sale, before the new owner could acquire the title. These titles ceased to be attached to the land with the abolition of feudalism.
In principle it is not possible.
It is only valid where the change of name and the acquisition of the nobility is authorised by the sovereign (for example by Royal License to take the name and arms, with an appropriate difference to the arms, in UK, or, historically until 1918, Wappens-, Namens- und Adelsübertragung in Germany and Austria).
In general, no,
except where the sovereign has authorised the transmission (for example, a Royal License to take the name and arms, with an appropriate change to the arms, in UK), or where adoption is recognised in public law to have this effect (The Netherlands since 1994, and Belgium, where it must be plenary adoption).
Only in Belgium and the United Kingdom.
Titles of nobility, but not untitled nobility, can still be granted in Spain.
Families of great lords began using hereditary heraldic devices centred on the shield in the twelfth century, and their use spread to knightly families as a whole during the following century.
The primary purpose was recognition in battle, but they were very quickly also used on seals. In some countries, coats of arms also came to be assumed by townsmen (normally without a helmet, or with open helmet and mantling), but in others their use remained restricted to the nobility.
In countries where townsmen used arms with a helmet, the use of an open helmet was restricted to nobility whereas in countries where only the nobility used arms, open helmets might be restricted to the titled nobility.
Fundamentally, nobility is a quality which descends to all the family.
Many noble families are untitled, and where there is a title, it may be restricted in primogeniture, or to the male members of the family. Exceptionally, after 1809 in Sweden, even grants of untitled nobility were restricted in primogeniture.
Primogeniture is a rule of inheritance whereby the eldest child, and normally the eldest male child, is the heir.
It might be applied to property and/or titles. Historically, primogeniture was normal for titles in England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Spain and southern Italy for titles following Frankish’ law in southern Italy and Sicily. Since 2006, Spanish titles have been inheritable by the eldest child regardless of sex.
A predicate is an honorific form of address, or an honorific description. For example, Royal Highness, Serene Highness (German, Durchlaucht) and Illustrious Highness (Erlaucht) are predicates. In Spain, grandees are entitled to the predicate excelentísimo and other titled nobles to ilustrísimo. In Italy, a feudal nom de terre is considered as a predicate. In the Netherlands, jonkheer (écuyer) is a predicate, whereas in Belgium, following a decision of the Cour de Cassation in 1927, it is considered a title. In the UK, ‘Honourable’ or ‘Right Honourable’, or ‘Sir’ (for a Knight or Baronet), all before the name, or Esquire (always after the name) are predicates, although the term predicate is not used.
Knights (chevaliers, milites) were originally warriors who served on horseback. However, the status of knighthood was formally conferred from the eleventh century by girding, or dubbing, with a sword, often following a vigil, or on the battlefield. The knight’s son who had not yet been made a knight was an esquire (écuyer, knabe). Thus, the dubbed knights, and their descendants, came to be distinguished from other mounted soldiers, and conferring knighthood, or eligibility for knighthood (typically with a right to a coat of arms) was an early form of ennoblement. In this way the knightly class became the core of the nobility.
During the crusading period, religious Orders of knighthood developed (the knights were the lay brothers but ran the Order), and from the fourteenth century monarchs established their own secular Orders of Chivalry. religious and secular. Later, knighthood also came to be conferred by patent.
In the case of the nobilities of central and northern Europe, the nobility as a whole, or part of it, often came to form a corporate knightly group (Ritterschaft, Ridderschap, Riddarhuset). In central Europe, the Ritterstand came to be granted on an hereditary basis. Where it remained a personal quality, a further act became necessary for the ennoblement of the family.
Orders of merit from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries often retain a grade of knight, chevalier, cavaliere, even where nobility has been abolished. Where nobility is still recognised, such a grade will still confer personal nobility.
Baronet is an hereditary title descending by primogeniture introduced in England in 1611 and shortly afterwards in Scotland and Ireland. It gives the right to be styled Sir before the Christian name and surname (e.g., Sir N. N.), A baronetcy is not, however, a peerage.
Gentry is strictly the same as Adel or noblesse, although most often used as an equivalent to untitled nobility. In Britain, therefore, in a legal sense it requires a right to a coat of arms conferred or recognised by the Crown. However, by extension, it is sometimes also used, from the eighteenth century, to include families living in the same style but without a formal proof of status.
A peer is an equal, and fundamentally an equal in a legal context. From this developed peers of the realm in England and the pairs (originally twelve pairs) of France.
A peerage in Britain conferred a right of personal summons to Parliament. This was attached to the titles Baron (in Scotland before 1707, lord of Parliament), Viscount, Earl, Marquis (Marquess) and Duke. Since 1999, the hereditary peers no longer have a right to attend Parliament unless they are among the 97 elected representative hereditary peers, and only life peers can attend automatically.
In France most dukes and some counts ranked as pairs de France in the ancien régime and could sit in the Parlement of Paris. Six archbishops and bishops also ranked as pairs de France, whereas in England the archbishops, bishops (and before the Reformation certain abbots) rank as lords spiritual and sit in the House of Lords as such.
In France, a Chambre des Pairs was created in 1814 and peerages were given to a larger number of titled nobles. These were hereditary from 1815, although from 1817 an entailed supporting estate (majorat) was also required. From 1830, only life peerages were conferred and the Chambre des Pairs was abolished in 1848.
Also during the nineteenth century, this concept of peerage was extended to Sicily (1812) and Portugal (1826, with both hereditary and life peers, although the former were phased out from 1885).
The grandeza is a ‘treatment’ which was formalised in the reign of Charles V whereby the titled nobles who were heads of the greatest Spanish families had the right on certain occasions to remain covered in the presence of the King and to be addressed by him as cousin. Originally it was conferred by the simple command ‘Cubridos’, and was restricted to eight dukes, two marquesses and four counts. By the mid-sixteenth century was accorded to the heads of twenty families, some with more than one branch. Subsequently all Spanish dukedoms received the grandeza on creation, but where other titles were given it, this was usually done at a later date, and often long afterwards. From the time of Philip III there was also a patent of creation in each case, and from seventeenth century there were three classes. However the third class was abolished in 1866 and since 1874 there has been only one. Exceptionally it has been attached to a title lower than conde, or to a señorio, or given without a title or for life.
In Portugal, the grandeeship originated during the period of the union of crowns with Spain. In the eighteenth century it was restricted to dukes, marquesses and counts unless the subject of a special grant.