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[mahr-kwis, mahr-kee; French mar-kee] /ˈmɑr kwɪs, mɑrˈki; French marˈki/
noun, plural marquises [mahr-kwi-siz] /ˈmɑr kwɪ sɪz/ (Show IPA), marquis
[mahr-keez; French mar-kee] /mɑrˈkiz; French marˈki/ (Show IPA)
a nobleman ranking next below a duke and above an earl or count.
Also, British, marquess.
Origin of marquis
1250-1300; Middle English markis < Middle French marquis < Italian marchese < Medieval Latin *(comēs) marc(h)ēnsis (count) of a borderland. See march2, -ese
Can be confused


[mahr-kwis] /ˈmɑr kwɪs/
Don(ald Robert Perry) 1878–1937, U.S. humorist and poet. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for marquis
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • marquis worked for a while at the canning machines, at the big grinding vats.

    The Victor Bryce Walton
  • Cannot we go to them, who do not seek the hospitality of the marquis?

    Fair Margaret H. Rider Haggard
  • The marquis of Queensbury should have lived to see this, he thought.

    Anything You Can Do Gordon Randall Garrett
  • "I do," answered the marquis of Morella, speaking for the first time.

    Fair Margaret H. Rider Haggard
  • There had not of late been much expression of kindness from the marquis to the clergyman.

    Marion Fay Anthony Trollope
British Dictionary definitions for marquis


/ˈmɑːkwɪs; mɑːˈkiː; French marki/
noun (pl) -quises, -quis
(in various countries) a nobleman ranking above a count, corresponding to a British marquess. The title of marquis is often used in place of that of marquess
Word Origin
C14: from Old French marchis, literally: count of the march, from marchemarch²


Don(ald Robert Perry). 1878–1937, US humorist; author of archy and mehitabel (1927)
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 marquis

also marquess, c.1300, title of nobility, from Old French marchis, literally "ruler of a border area," from Old French marche "frontier," from Medieval Latin marca "frontier, frontier territory" (see march (n.1)). Originally the ruler of border territories in various European regions (e.g. Italian marchese, Spanish marqués); later a mere title of rank, below duke and above count. Related: Marquisate.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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