Denotation vs. Connotation


[noh-bil-i-tee] /noʊˈbɪl ɪ ti/
noun, plural nobilities.
the noble class or the body of nobles in a country.
(in Britain) the peerage.
the state or quality of being noble.
nobleness of mind, character, or spirit; exalted moral excellence.
grandeur or magnificence.
noble birth or rank.
Origin of nobility
1350-1400; Middle English nobilite < Latin nōbilitās. See noble, -ity
Related forms
nonnobility, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for nobility
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But it is most of all interesting for the nobility of its proportions and the simplicity of its architecture.

    Ave Roma Immortalis, Vol. 1 Francis Marion Crawford
  • Her woman's intuition was sufficient guarantee of the nobility of his character.

    The Monster Men Edgar Rice Burroughs
  • His true father is Vasudeva, a leader of the Yadava nobility and member of the Mathura ruling caste.

  • There was in this man an Oriental nobility choked by Western fashion and customs.

    My Double Life Sarah Bernhardt
  • It was a blank, pale face, full of splendid resolution and the nobility of suffering, but without one ray of hope.

    A Son of Hagar Sir Hall Caine
British Dictionary definitions for nobility


noun (pl) -ties
a socially or politically privileged class whose titles are conferred by descent or by royal decree
the state or quality of being morally or spiritually good; dignity: the nobility of his mind
(in the British Isles) the class of people holding the titles of dukes, marquesses, earls, viscounts, or barons and their feminine equivalents collectively; peerage
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 nobility

mid-14c., "quality of being excellent or rare," from Old French nobilite "high rank; dignity, grace; great deed" (12c., Modern French nobilité), and directly from Latin nobilitatem (nominative nobilitas) "celebrity, fame; high birth; excellence, superiority; the nobles," from nobilis "well-known, prominent" (see noble (adj.)). Meaning "quality of being of noble rank or birth" is attested from late 14c.; sense of "noble class collectively" is from 1520s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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