Several genealogy and royal lineage experts came forward Sunday morning with alarming news: First, that the Duke of Earl is not a fiction, and second, that Sonny Bono, of all people, was the last living Duke of Earl.
"Earl is a small, lesser-known township about 60 kilometers from Manchester," commented one of the lineage experts, R. Calvin Kooligidaire. "Right now, only four people live there. But in the 1640s, it was a boom town, because it was home to a salt mine and an armory, not to mention a horse breeding field."
"And," interjected another expert, M. Maynard Fillmorsel, "every boom town had its own Duke, of course. Earl, being so small nowadays, hasn't really kept up on this--but a sizable population of Earl-dwellers migrated to the Americas and to Continental Europe in the 1700s and 1800s. Mr. Bono's maternal grandmother's line was one of them, and strangely, her line was also heir to the Dukedom of Earl. Mr. Sonny Bono was the last living Duke of Earl."
Cher wrote on her blog a long and moving entry about the extra respect she now felt for the deceased Bono. "Sonny was among my dearest friends, and I miss him every day, several times. I meditate, now, upon his photograph, and I think about what it means to be the last Duke of Earl."