a member of the political party in medieval Italy and Germany that supported the sovereignty of the papacy against the German emperors: opposed to the Ghibellines.
a member of a secret society in Italy in the early 19th century that opposed foreign rulers and reactionary ideas.
Also, Guelf.

1570–80; < Italian Guelfo < Middle High German Welf name of founder of a princely German family

Guelphic, Guelfic, adjective
Guelphism, Guelfism, noun Unabridged


a city in SE Ontario, in S Canada. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To Guelph
World English Dictionary
Guelph or Guelf1 (ɡwɛlf)
1.  Compare Ghibelline a member of the political faction in medieval Italy that supported the power of the pope against the German emperors
2.  a member of a secret society in 19th-century Italy opposed to foreign rule
Guelf or Guelf1
'Guelphic or Guelf1
'Guelfic or Guelf1
'Guelphism or Guelf1
'Guelfism or Guelf1

Guelph2 (ɡwɛlf)
a city in Canada, in SE Ontario. Pop: 106 920 (2001)

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

1579, from It. Guelfo, from O.H.G. Welf, name of a princely family that became the ducal house of Brunswick, lit. "whelp," originally the name of the founder. One of the two great parties in medieval It. politics, characterized by support of the popes against the emperors (opposed to the Ghibellines).
They are the ancestors of the present dynasty of Great Britain. The name is said to have been used as a war-cry at the Battle of Weinsberg (1140) by partisans of Henry the Lion, duke of Bavaria, who was of the family, against Emperor Conrad III; hence it was adopted in Italy as the name of the anti-imperial party.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Britannica


city, seat (1838) of Wellington county, southeastern Ontario, Canada. It lies along the Speed River, 40 miles (65 km) west-southwest of Toronto. Founded in 1827 alongside the falls on the river by John Galt, a Scottish novelist and colonizer, it was named after the Guelfs (Welfs), the family name of the British royal house of Hanover. Guelph is now a major manufacturing, agricultural, and educational centre in one of Canada's most densely populated areas. Its varied manufactures include clothing, cigarettes, electric transformers, glass yarn, and saw chains. The Ontario Agricultural College (established in 1874) and Ontario Veterinary College (1862), now both part of the University of Guelph (1964), contribute to the city's importance as a centre for research and training in scientific agriculture. Inc. village, 1851; town, 1856; city, 1879. Pop. (2006) 114,943.

Learn more about Guelph with a free trial on

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature