Think aesthetics as politics, and academic credentials as peerage.
Duchess is the highest rank in the English peerage (in descending order the ranks go duke, marquess, earl, viscount, and baron).
But Blair has said publicly that he does not want a peerage.
It was intended, instead, to be based on “peerage,” where all players are equal.
But we were not sure if the peerage ate preserves—much less knew how they were made.
And I was within an ace of becoming an ornament of the British peerage.
Having made this quite unwarranted assumption, the letter went on to suggest that I should ask Conroy if he would like a peerage.
I hope he will be elevated in the peerage: he looks as if he wanted it so!
The original mansion was built by a person named Finch, one of whose descendants was promoted to the peerage.
He had read about her in a peerage at his sister's book-shop the previous day.