Countries with an establshed nobility?

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Jonathan Webster
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Countries with an establshed nobility?

Postby Jonathan Webster » 20 May 2013, 12:32

Might sound like a bit of an odd question to be asking on a heraldry forum (and only tangentially related to heraldry) but: what are the countries where there is a system of legally recognisrd (by the state) nobility? I think (but may be wrong) the list is:

*United Kingdom
*Spain
*Netherlands
*Belgium
*Luxembourg
*Denmark
*Sweden (none awarded since 1902)
*Monaco
*Liechtenstein
*Vatican City (none awarded since...not sure when)
*San Marino (none awarded since I think 1983)
*Tonga

Any I've missed out? Yes, I'm aware there's some examples (like Sweden) where there haven't been any titles of nobility awarded in a long while outside the Royal Family, but which countries still recognise a system of nobility and could in theory still grant them?

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Chris Green
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Re: Countries with an establshed nobility?

Postby Chris Green » 20 May 2013, 15:10

Let's not forget the Hutt River Principality!
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Jonathan Webster
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Re: Countries with an establshed nobility?

Postby Jonathan Webster » 20 May 2013, 15:55

Ha! Well, my query is heraldry-related, just not directly.

That said, what about places like the islamic monarchies, and places like Lesotho, Swaziland, or monarchies in the far east...probably a question for another forum I guess.

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Chas Charles-Dunne
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Re: Countries with an establshed nobility?

Postby Chas Charles-Dunne » 20 May 2013, 16:10

Jonathan Webster wrote:Ha! Well, my query is heraldry-related, just not directly.

That said, what about places like the islamic monarchies, and places like Lesotho, Swaziland, or monarchies in the far east...probably a question for another forum I guess.


I might be out on a limb here, but I do not believe that there is such a thing as Islamic heraldry (and for that matter Japanese heraldry).
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Jonathan Webster
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Re: Countries with an establshed nobility?

Postby Jonathan Webster » 20 May 2013, 18:13

The Japanese system of mon certainly fulfills much of the criteria of what we think of as heraldry- family mon are even differenced for different branches of the same family-and Japan certainly did have a nobility prior to the Second World War-organised along western lines with Dukes, Marquesses, Barons and the like-but I have no idea if it exists in modern-day Japan.

Regarding Islamic families bearing arms, I can think of a couple of high ranking (but not royal) families that bear arms in the western manner-mainly from Egypt and Iran and under European influence but they do exist. I've no idea if any of them have a system of nobility.

At any rate I wasn't really asking if heraldry exists in those countries, I was asking whether they had a system of nobilty.
Last edited by Jonathan Webster on 01 Jun 2014, 16:28, edited 1 time in total.

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JMcMillan
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Re: Countries with an establshed nobility?

Postby JMcMillan » 20 May 2013, 22:05

The Finnish House of Nobles (Riddarhuset) operates under a law passed by the parliament of the republic in 1918, which would imply that the Finnish nobility is officially recognized, even though, as far as I can tell, it doesn't have any privileges other than membership in the House of Nobles. (Finnish nobles did enjoy a tax exemption until 1920, and the fact that the nobility wasn't abolished when the tax law was changed is further evidence that it is still recognized.)
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Torsten Laneryd
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Re: Countries with an establshed nobility?

Postby Torsten Laneryd » 20 May 2013, 22:15

The king of Sweden lost the right to ennoble in the Constitution Act of 1974.

Jonathan Webster
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Re: Countries with an establshed nobility?

Postby Jonathan Webster » 20 May 2013, 23:06

But the Swedish nobility's still recognised under law though?

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Torsten Laneryd
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Re: Countries with an establshed nobility?

Postby Torsten Laneryd » 20 May 2013, 23:46

2003 repealed the Swedish nobility last formal privileges of a united parliament.
Parliament's decision meant that all public law rules specific to the nobility disappeared. 1723 charters revoked.

In addition, the writings based on the wording in Riddarhusordningen that contained the powers and obligations of the nobility also disappeared.

Jonathan Webster
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Re: Countries with an establshed nobility?

Postby Jonathan Webster » 20 May 2013, 23:58

So-are titles of nobility no longer recognised under law?


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