An elite group of survivors and personal liegemen to Oberon accumulated over many thousands of years. Some brought to Amber by princes of the blood, but most proving themselves on the field of battle with the awesome foes of Amber.
See my Noble titles post.
There are three different ranks prestige accounted within this exclusive club. I'll point out what they are, then list the families in order of scale. The little numbers gives you an idea of scale, as in, how many members of each family. This is not seniority in all cases, but some indication of well-managed resources.
Those recently or modestly titled who have not developed lands, but have demonstrated strong usefulness to the Throne are the Entre nobles. They may be knights/dames or lords/ladies. They may not have family to pass their honors to.
IMC: Dantaine7, Bannock5, Ruer3, Josef3. Patchert2, Maclowan1
Those families well-known to any urban person in Amber, who have developed lands, heirs, and tenacious usefulness to the Throne are the Landed nobles. They have to manage their heirs and family such that they don't grow and outstrip their own success. IOW, they are working nobles.
They are all Lords. Ex: the head of House is known as Lord/Lady Janus while the youngers are called Lady Jayne, Lord Micah, etc.
IMC: Janus21, Olacch20, Uerth19, Alar16, Lionus15, Savonne14, Merton11, Ervis2
Those families well-known to any important person in the Golden Circle, who have developed lands, towns, villages, heirs, and tenacious usefulness to the Throne are the Steward nobles. They have wise grip on their heirs and family such that they don't collapse from success. IOW, there may be more than a few nobles standing on the shoulders of long-dead ancestors.
On paper, these familes have no more power than the others listed, but they may also have titles they use from Golden Circle assets, lands or courts.
IMC: Karm99, Bayles57, Chantris34, Feldane26
How in the world can you have 99 Karms alive at the same time?
If a reproductive generation was 30 years, and if the average person in Amber lives to 250, that accounts for 8 generations right there. Add to this that the folk of these familes often live much longer than the average person of Amber, and you get these numbers.
No one much talks about it, but many of these nobles (some whom can trace their lineage to shadow worlds), live as long as six hundred years.