[ mawr-guh-nat-ik ]
/ ˌmɔr gəˈnæt ɪk /


of or relating to a form of marriage in which a person of high rank, as a member of the nobility, marries someone of lower station with the stipulation that neither the low-ranking spouse nor their children, if any, will have any claim to the titles or entailed property of the high-ranking partner.

Origin of morganatic

1720–30; < New Latin morganāticus (adj.), for Medieval Latin phrase (mātrimōnium) ad morganāticam (marriage) to the extent of morning-gift (morganātica representing Germanic *morgangeba (feminine); compare Old English morgengiefu gift from husband to wife on day after wedding)

Related forms

mor·ga·nat·i·cal·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for morganatic

British Dictionary definitions for morganatic


/ (ˌmɔːɡəˈnætɪk) /


of or designating a marriage between a person of high rank and a person of low rank, by which the latter is not elevated to the higher rank and any issue have no rights to the succession of the higher party's titles, property, etc

Derived Forms

morganatically, adverb

Word Origin for morganatic

C18: from the Medieval Latin phrase mātrimōnium ad morganāticum marriage based on the morning-gift (a token present after consummation representing the husband's only liability); morganātica, ultimately from Old High German morgan morning; compare Old English morgengiefu morning-gift
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