MacDonnell (No.2) family genealogy

Earls of Antrim

Arms: For the ancient Arms of the family see "MacDonnell" (No. 1) pedigree.

SIR RANDAL MacDONNELL, a younger brother of Sir James, of Dunluce, county Antrim, who is No. 116 on the (foregoing) "MacDonnell" (No. 1) pedigree, was the ancestor of MacDonnell, earls of Antrim.

116. Sir Randal [1]: a younger son of Sorley MacDonnell; created in 1618 "Viscount Dunluce," and advanced to the "earldom of Antrim" in 1620; died in 1636.

117. Randal: his son; created "marquis [2] of Antrim;" died in 1682; was succeeded by his brother Alexander, the third earl of Antrim, who died in 1699.

118. Randal: son of said Alexander; was the fourth earl of Antrim; died in 1721.

119. Alexander: his son; the fifth earl; d. 1775.

120. Randal-William: his son; the sixth earl; had no issue but two daughters—1. Anne-Catherine, 2. Charlotte, to whom in 1785 new Patent with remainder was granted; with this Randal-William the old earldom of Antrim became extinct; he died in 1791.

121. Anne-Catherine MacDonnell: his daughter; countess of Antrim in her own right; died in 1834. Her sister Charlotte succeded her as countess of Antrim, and married lord M. R. Kerr; she died in 1835.

122. Hugh-Seymour, earl of Antrim: their son; died in 1855; had a brother named Mark who succeeded him, and was earl of Antrim.

123. William-Randall MacDonnell, third earl of Antrim, under new Patent: son of the said Mark.


[1] Randal: Sir Randal MacDonnell, first Earl of Antrim, succeeded to the family estates on the death of his brother James, in 1601. He was known as Arranach, from having been fostered in the island of Aran. In the autumn of 1602 he abandoned the cause of Hugh O'Neill, and joined Sir A. Chichester, offering to serve against his former ally with 500 foot and 40 horse, maintained at his own expense. He was subsequently knighted by Mountjoy. In 1603, James I. granted him 333,907 acres between Larne and Coleraine. About 1604 he married Alice, daughter of O'Neill. His position after the flight of O'Neill and O'Donnell was very perilous; but, by devoting himself entirely to the consolidation and improvement of his estates, his movements, as O'Neill's son-in-law, ceased to excite the suspicion of the authorities; and when he had occasion to visit London in 1608, he was cordially received at Court. In 1618 he was created "Viscount Dunluce," a member of the Privy Council, and Lieutenant of the county Antrim; and two years afterwards the title of "Earl of Antrim" was conferred on him. Besides estates in Ulster, he owned lands on the Scottish coast, the sustainment of his rights in which gave him at times no little trouble. The Earl died at Dunluce on the 10th December, 1636, and was buried at Bonamargy.

[2] Marquis: This Randal, Marquis, and second Earl, of Antrim, was bred in the Highland way; "he wore neither hat, cap, nor shoe, nor stocking, till seven or eight years old." In 1635 he married the widow of the Duke of Buckingham, who thereupon returned to Catholicism, which she had renounced on her first marriage. On the breaking out of the war in Scotland he was appointed by Charles I. one of his lieutenants and commissioners in the Highlands and Islands. In June, 1640, he took his seat in the Irish House of Lords, and continued to reside in Dublin until the War 1641-'52 broke out. On the 26th January, 1644, he received a Marquisate. The Cromwellian Settlement deprived him of his estates for a time; but in July, 1666, he was restored to the possession of 87,086 acres in Dunluce and Glenarm. He died at Ballymagarry on the 3rd Feb., 1682, and was buried in state in the family vault at Bonamargy.