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earl

[url] /ɜrl/
noun
1.
a British nobleman of a rank below that of marquis and above that of viscount: called count for a time after the Norman conquest. The wife of an earl is a countess.
2.
(in Anglo-Saxon England) a governor of one of the great divisions of England, including East Anglia, Mercia, Northumbria, and Wessex.
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English erl, Old English eorl; cognate with Old Saxon erl man, Old Norse jarl chieftain

Earl

[url] /ɜrl/
noun
1.
a male given name: from the old English word meaning “noble.”.
Also, Earle.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for earl
  • The character sheriff earl mcgraw appears in both kill bill, vol.
  • The first lord of the admiralty, earl spencer, fainted on hearing the news.
  • External links more about earl grey on the downing street website.
British Dictionary definitions for earl

earl

/ɜːl/
noun
1.
(in the British Isles) a nobleman ranking below a marquess and above a viscount Female equivalent countess
2.
(in Anglo-Saxon England) a royal governor of any of the large divisions of the kingdom, such as Wessex
Word Origin
Old English eorl; related to Old Norse jarl chieftain, Old Saxon erl man
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for earl
n.

Old English eorl "brave man, warrior, leader, chief" (contrasted with ceorl "churl"), from Proto-Germanic *erlo-z, of uncertain origin.

In Anglo-Saxon poetry, "a warrior, a brave man;" in later Old English, "nobleman," especially a Danish under-king (equivalent of cognate Old Norse jarl), then one of the viceroys under the Danish dynasty in England. After 1066 adopted as the equivalent of Latin comes (see count (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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4
5
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