The largest island in the Firth of Clyde in western Scotland, close to the Kintyre peninsula. It was part of the Kingdom of Mann & the Isles, which was ceded to Scotland by Norway in 1266, though it was probably under Scottish control already.
The title of Earl of Arran was given in 1467 to Thomas Boyd, son of Lord Boyd and husband of Mary, the King’s sister. Father and son were seen as upstarts and driven from the Kingdom in 1469. The title was later given to the Hamiltons, descendants of Mary’s second marriage, and became dormant in 1651. (The existing Earldom of Arran is not Scottish but Irish, taking its name from the Aran Islands in Galway Bay).
Arran belonged to Buteshire until 1975, when it became part of the Cunningham district in the Strathclyde Region. This became the unitary authority of North Ayrshire in 1996. Since 1975 there has been a Lord Lieutenant for Ayrshire & Arran.