George Hamilton, 3rd Earl of Abercorn

George Hamilton, 3rd Earl of Abercorn (c.1636 – before 1683) died unmarried in Padua on a voyage to Rome. He was succeeded by Claud Hamilton, heir of Claud Hamilton, 2nd Baron Hamilton of Strabane, second son of the 1st Earl of Abercorn.

  • The Right Honourable
  • The Earl of Abercorn
Earl of Abercorn
Tenurec. 1670 – bef. 1683
PredecessorJames Hamilton
SuccessorClaud Hamilton
BornGeorge Hamilton
Diedbefore 1683
Padua, Veneto, Italy
FatherJames Hamilton
MotherKatherine Clifton

Birth and origins

George was born about 1636, probably in Paisley, Scotland, as the third son of James Hamilton and his wife Katherine Clifton.[1] His father was the 2nd Earl of Abercorn. His mother was Dowager Duchess of Lennox from her previous marriage and Baroness Clifton of Leighton Bromswold in her own right.

Family tree
George Hamilton with parents and other selected relatives. He never married.
1st Earl


d. 1632
2nd Earl

d. 1670

c. 1590 –
2nd Baron
H. of

d. 1638

c. 1635 –
bef. 1670
d. bef.
3rd Earl
c. 1636 –
bef. 1683
3rd Baron
H. of

4th Baron
H. of

1636/7 – 1668
4th Earl

5th Earl

d. 1701
XXXEarls of
This family tree is partly derived from the Abercorn pedigree pictured in Cokayne.[2] Also see the list of siblings in the text.

He appears at the bottom of the list of brothers below as the youngest:

  1. James (c. 1635 – before 1670), who as the heir apparent was known by the courtesy title of Lord Paisley, made himself a Presbyterian,[3] married, had a daughter but no son and predeceased his father;[4]
  2. William (died before 1670), who became a colonel but predeceased his father unmarried in the German wars;[5] and
  3. George (c. 1636 – before 1683), the subject of this article.

His mother died in Scotland while he was still an infant.[6] At that time his father was deep in debt owing more than 400,000 merks to his creditors.[7]

His father was Catholic and was excommunicated by the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland in 1649 and ordered to leave the kingdom.[8] On 22 June 1652 he sold Paisley to the Earl of Angus for £13,333 6s 8d.[9]

Father's succession

His two elder brothers grew up to reach adulthood but predeceased his father, making him the only surviving son and heir. He therefore succeeded as the 3rd Earl of Abercorn at his father's death in about 1670.[10][11]

Death and succession

Lord Abercorn died in his fourties, unmarried, about 1680, in Padua, Veneto, Italy, on his way to Rome,[12][13]

With his death the senior line of the Abercorns failed. The title passed to the nearest cadet branch which was that of the barons Hamilton of Strabane, who descended from his uncle Claud. The representative of this line, Claud's grandson, Claud Hamilton, 5th Baron Hamilton of Strabane, therefore became the 4th Earl of Abercorn.[14][15]


As the birth date is uncertain, so are the ages.

01636, aboutBorn.[1]
11637, Sep.Mother died in Scotland.[6]
161652, 22 Jun.Father sold Paisley.[9]
341670, aboutFather died,[10] and he succeeded as the 3rd Earl.
441680, aboutDied in Padua.[12]

Notes and references

  1. Cokayne 1910, p. 5, line 8: "GEORGE (HAMILTON), EARL OF ABERCORN, etc. [S.], 3rd, but 1st surv. s. and h., b. about 1636."
  2. Cokayne 1910, p. 4: "Tabular pedigree of the Earls of Abercorn"
  3. Metcalfe 1909, p. 249"the earnest desire of Lord Paisley, the Earl's son, who is of the Religion and of hopeful expectation ..."
  4. Paul 1904, p. 49, line 21: "James ... who died before his father ... had only a daughter."
  5. Paul 1904, p. 49, line 30: "William ... died before his father, being killed in the wars in Germany, without issue."
  6. Cokayne 1913, p. 310: "She d. in Scotland and was bur. 'without ceremonie', 17 Sep. 1637, aged about 45."
  7. Cokayne 1910, p. 3, line 26a: "He was then [about 1640] living, but 'more than 400,000 merks in debt'."
  8. Metcalfe 1909, p. 250, line 7: "At length, in 1649, the General Assembly, which, as we have seen, had long since taken the case out of the hands of the Presbytery, pronounced the sentence of excommunication and banishment against him."
  9. Metcalfe 1909, p. 310, line 6: "On June 22, 1652, the Earl of Abercorn signed a disposition, by which, for the sum of £13,333 6s 8p. Scots, he sold to the Earl of Angus 'the Lordship and barony of Paisley, comprehending "
  10. Cokayne 1910, p. 3, line 26b: "He [the 2nd Earl] d. about 1670."
  11. Burke 1949, p. 3, right column: "His lordship d. about 1670 and was s. by his only surviving son, GEORGE, 3rd earl of Abercorn, d. unm. at Padua, before 1683, and was s. by his cousin ..."
  12. Paul 1904, p. 49, line 34: "GEORGE, third Earl of Abercorn, succeeded his father but died unmarried in Padua, on his journey to Rome, whereby the male line failed in the eldest branch ... "
  13. Cokayne 1910, p. 5, line 9: "He was living in 1670, but d. unm. at Padua, in Italy, before 1683."
  14. Cokayne 1892, p. 153, line 7: "CLAUD (HAMILTON) BARON HAMILTON OF STRABANE [I.], s. and h., bap. 13 Sep. 1659, at St. Audoen's, Dublin. By the death of his cousin about 1680, he became EARL OF ABERCORN etc, [S.]"
  15. Debrett 1828, p. 63, line 9"... whose grandson, Claude, 5th baron of Strabane, in Ireland, succeeded as 4th earl of Abercorn, on the death of his cousin, George, 3rd earl;"
Peerage of Scotland
Preceded by
James Hamilton
Earl of Abercorn
c. 1670 – bef. 1683
Succeeded by
Claud Hamilton
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