What is nobility?

  • (noun): The state of being of noble birth.
    Synonyms: noblesse
    See also — Additional definitions below


Nobility is a social class which possesses more acknowledged privileges or eminence than members of most other classes in a society, membership therein typically being hereditary. The privileges associated with nobility may constitute substantial advantages over or relative to non-nobles, or may be largely honorary (e.g. precedence), and vary from country to country and era to era. Historically membership in the nobility and the prerogatives thereof have been regulated or acknowledged by the government, thereby distinguishing it from other sectors of a nation's upper class. Nonetheless, nobility per se has rarely constituted a closed caste; acquisition of sufficient power, wealth, military prowess or royal favour has, occasionally or often, enabled commoners to ascend into the nobility.

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Some articles on nobility:

... The European Commission of the Nobility under the name CILANE ("Commission d'information et de liaison des associations nobles d'Europe") was ... initiatives, particularly in nations where titles of nobility are no longer recognised and therefore unregulated by law ... The delegates represent their Nobility Associations at the CILANE for the following countries Belgium, France, Italy, Russia, Germany, Switzerland, Portugal, Sweden, Finland, Netherlands, Papal ...
Seimas Of The Grand Duchy Of Lithuania - History
... Sigismund II Augustus I (1548–1564) Vilnius 3 Minsk 1 Total 40 The first traces of large nobility meetings can be found in the Treaty of Salynas of 1398 and the Union of ... Soon influence of the nobility grew as Casimir's privileges released veldamas, dependent peasants, from their taxes to the state ... That meant a significant increase in nobility's revenue ...
List Of Finnish Noble Families
... Families officially belonging to Finnish nobility have been introduced to the Finnish House of Nobility ... The remaining 119 families belong to untitled nobility ...
Known Family Branches - Nobility - Lorber Von Lorberau
... Today, no descendants of the noble Lorber branches are known. ...
Nobility By Nation
... category, see CategoryNobility by nation Armenian nobility Austrian nobility Baltic nobility related to the modern area of Estonia and Latvia Belgian nobility Bohemian nobility Brazilian nobility ...

More definitions of "nobility":

  • (noun): A privileged class holding hereditary titles.
    Synonyms: aristocracy

Famous quotes containing the word nobility:

    Something has ceased to come along with me.
    Something like a person: something very like one.
    And there was no nobility in it
    Or anything like that.
    Jon Silkin (b. 1930)

    If there be no nobility of descent in a nation, all the more indispensable is it that there should be nobility of ascent—a character in them that bear rule, so fine and high and pure, that as men come within the circle of its influence, they involuntarily pay homage to that which is the one pre-eminent distinction, the Royalty of Virtue.
    Henry Codman Potter (1835–1908)

    I have come to the conclusion that the closer people are to what may be called the front lines of government ... the easier it is to see the immediate underbrush, the individual tree trunks of the moment, and to forget the nobility the usefulness and the wide extent of the forest itself.... They forget that politics after all is only an instrument through which to achieve Government.
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882–1945)