- noble birth or condition
- the noble class
Word Origin for noblesse
Related Words for noblessemagnanimity, majesty, society, incorruptibility, integrity, ennoblement, generosity, greatness, excellence, grandeur, elevation, exaltation, royalty, blood, birth, gentry, magnificence, elite, loftiness, glorification
Examples from the Web for noblesse
Contemporary Examples of noblesse
In an update of Nancy Mitford's 'Noblesse Oblige', The Telegraph has this handy guide, entitled, “What type of RP do you speak?”Prince William Has 'Less Posh' Voice Than Kate
November 6, 2012
What if charity—giving out of love or noblesse oblige or religious commitment—doesn't go far enough?Avoiding Sodom: It's About Policy, Not Charity
September 10, 2012
Mitt Romney started off this campaign cycle as a noblesse oblige candidate.
The Romney-Ryan ticket now seems to be all noblesse, no oblige.
Historical Examples of noblesse
Despairing of the noblesse he went among the bourgeoisie with that hope.Night and Morning, Complete
It cannot be the destruction of the noblesse, for they are noble.Gerald Fitzgerald
Charles James Lever
The Burman's motto should be Noblesse oblige; he knows the meaning, if he knows not the words.The Soul of a People
He likened the king to the sun and the "noblesse" to the moon.The Rise of the Hugenots, Vol. 1 (of 2)
Henry Martyn Baird
But this is only the Brussels of the noblesse and the foreigners.
early 13c., "noble birth or condition," from Old French noblece "noble birth, splendor, magnificence" (Modern French noblesse), from Vulgar Latin *nobilitia, from Latin nobilis (see noble (adj.)). French phrase noblesse oblige "privilege entails responsibility" is attested in English first in 1837.