Dictionary.com
definitions
  • synonyms

margrave

[mahr-greyv]
noun
  1. (formerly) the hereditary title of the rulers of certain European states.
  2. History/Historical. a hereditary German title, equivalent to marquis.
  3. (originally) a military governor of a German mark, or border province.
Show More

Origin of margrave

1545–55; earlier marcgrave < Middle Dutch, equivalent to marke border (cognate with march2) + grave count (cognate with reeve1); compare German Markgraf
Related formsmar·gra·vi·al, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for margrave

Historical Examples

  • The Margrave of Rudesheimer was a slender man of elegant appearance.

    Vivian Grey

    Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli

  • The Margrave was astounded, the people in raptures, and the cousins in despair.

    Vivian Grey

    Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli

  • She had gone to Bayreuth, where she had been the margrave's mistress.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete

    Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

  • In accents broken by grief, the Margrave explained what had occurred.

    Burlesques

    William Makepeace Thackeray

  • "'Tis clear as the staff of a pike," said the poor Margrave, mournfully.

    Burlesques

    William Makepeace Thackeray


British Dictionary definitions for margrave

margrave

noun
  1. a German nobleman ranking above a count. Margraves were originally counts appointed to govern frontier provinces, but all had become princes of the Holy Roman Empire by the 12th century
Show More

Word Origin

C16: from Middle Dutch markgrave, literally: count of the march ²
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

Word Origin and History for margrave

n.

military governor of a German border province, 1550s, from Middle Dutch markgrave (Dutch markgraaf), literally "count of the border," from Old High German marcgravo; second element from graf "count, earl" (Old High German gravo, gravjo), from West Germanic *grafa "a designation of rank, possibly borrowed from Greek grapheus "scribe." For first element see mark (n.1). Later a hereditary title under the Holy Roman Empire. His wife was a margravine.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper