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Nobility in Abstraction[edit]

I am going to challenge this idea of Nobility and the concept of blue blood. Thank you Jordanp -map —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:54, 24 September 2008 (UTC)

It seems to me that this article lacks any connection to the notion of nobility in the sense of the word associated with the character trait; no page on the disambiguation page deals with it either. Whether from some sort of social-historical standpoint or from an ethics standpoint, it seems like that is very clearly lacking. While I don't want to spark some complicated Ethics argument, I would suggest you take a look at the sidebar on the Ethics page to see some of the other abstractions that have lengthy pages - Justice covers a broad range of meanings, as do several others. I think nobility is of the same, or a similar enough, class of abstractions to merit attention here. Jordanp (talk) 09:06, 18 August 2008 (UTC)

Middle-Eastern Nobility[edit]

Under the section listing nobility in different countries around the world, I see no middle-eastern nobility lists. Why? Could someone with a greater understanding of such titles maybe include them?

Early talk[edit]

I propose, moving the article at Ranks of nobility and peerage to here and merging with Titles of nobility and noble. I think the article at peerage is sufficiently well rounded to remain as it is, where it is.

Should the femenine versions of the titles be added? Theanthrope 16:51 25 Jul 2003 (UTC)

I don't know how to do the formatting but perhaps someone else can add the following femenine versions of the titles.

Duke - Duchess Duc - Duchesse Duca - Duchessa Duque - Duquesa Prince - Princess Prince - Princesse Principe - Principessa Príncipe - Princesa Earl / Count - Countes Comte Conte - Contessa Conde

How about nobility outside Europe? wshun 04:01 28 Jul 2003 (UTC)

I made the merger of several different entries on Nobility ("Noble", "Ranks of nobility and peerage", and "Title of nobility") in an effort avoid unnecessary duplication. Following this the German comital titles were spun off to Graf. There is still duplication in Royal and noble styles and the question whether or not to integrate that also is still open. Apart from this I think that the article itself is in quite a sorry state, and I feel that a more comprehensive approach is needed, and that would start with some form of basic outlay or definition of what constitutes a nobility. This should not be limited to the European Nobility, but have a more universal approach. -- Mic 15:04 28 Jul 2003 (UTC)

Doesn't nobility have to be granted/enforced by the government? And isn't it usualy associated with royalty/monarchy? The way it's described right now, Bill Gates could be a noble... -- Khym Chanur 08:55, Nov 24, 2003 (UTC)


Nobility is a category contained within aristocracy, which is a term of wider application. Japanese nobles vis-a-vis samurai. Useful ideas for anyone working on this complicated sunject can be found in Encyclopedia Britannica 1911. Is Burke's Peerage or G.E.C. Cockaigne useful too? Wetman 14:34, 19 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Just to reiterate, given the fudge that had appeared in the story - aristocracy is a word with various, correct usages, one of which is to denote a general category of monied families, within which nobility is a more sharply defined, formal category. I will revert edits made on the basis that the modern usage is wrong, misguided, muddled, etc. True, the Ancient Greeks meant it to mean something similar to meritocracy. That's what they meant by it, but the word now serves other purposes in living usage. Words evolve. Let's not have wikipedia adjudicate on whether the way most people in fact use the word is etymologically legitimate. Adhib 14:37, 5 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Comparison with present day US[edit]

There was some discussion of the usefulness of compare current USA officials to feudal roles. The conclusions were:

  • The US is not a feudal realm.
  • This kind of comparison is simply not appropriate for an anternational encyclopaedia

Accordingly, the comparisons were removed from the article. -- Anon reworker

Article title[edit]

I reverted the last move, since neither old nor new title correspond the content. I thought of Social hierarchy, but the title is already taken. Before any further renaming, let's discuss the title first. Second, please don't forget to fix double redirects.

The problem is that the article collected a good deal of text about non-nobles. I see two solutions: (a) a more general title; (b) splitting article in two (or more).

Any suggestions? Mikkalai 01:59, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

By the way, there are two drawbacks of the article: (1) poor definition of "Nobility" and (2) the article overwhelmingly speaks of European nobility, hence the title must correspond. Thus, I see the article to be split into three: (a) Nobility, Commoner, European nobility (and kill all comparison to USA; one may easily operate in Euro). Mikkalai 02:30, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Actually, into four: kings and emperors are not nobles, they are Sovereigns. The article is a total mess now. Mikkalai 02:30, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

I think that the article definitely should be split in (at least) two: one about nobility in general - it's origins, role, etc. (including non-Western European feudal systems), and the other one about aristocratic ranks and titles. Note that such elaborate systems of nobility ranks were often unknown outside Western Europe (in Poland the use of titles was even prohibited due to the principle of nobles' equality). --Kpalion 03:17, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Kpalion, there's already articles on European aristocratic ranks and titles at other places. Peerage does it for Britain, for instance, but I know there's a more general page about noble ranks in Europe in general. Also, is that really true about Poland? Weren't there Counts and Princes? john 17:29, 9 Apr 2004 (UTC)

In that case the table from this article should be merged there or deleted.
As for Poland-Lithuania, yes that's generally true. Of course, there was some hierarchy but it was based on offices (like voivods, prefects, castellans, judges, etc.), not inherited ranks (so it was more modern in some way). Only a handful of old aristocratic (mostly Lithuanian, I think) families were allowed to use the title of duke prince (książę). But there were no marquises, barons, earls, etc. The nobility was, in priciple, "free and equal". Some nobles could have had such titles granted by foreign monarchs but they couldn't use them in Poland. After the partitions, however, it was quite ususal for nobles to simply buy aristocratic titles from Prussian or Austrian governments, which led to mushrooming of Polish counts, barons, etc.
--Kpalion 22:37, 10 Apr 2004 (UTC)
Okay, makes sense. książę is frequently translated into English as "Prince" rather than "Duke," isn't it? john 22:41, 10 Apr 2004 (UTC)
I guess you're right, "prince" is a better translation for the Polish książę (according to the Polish Wikipedia for instance). However, for some reason wielki książę is usually translated as "grand duke", not "grand prince", which, I think, leads to more confusion. --Kpalion 23:04, 10 Apr 2004 (UTC)
Yeah, it's all very weird. In German, it's Großfürst, I believe, which is different from Großherzog, which makes a lot more sense. john 23:19, 10 Apr 2004 (UTC)
John, you wrote, there's already articles on European aristocratic ranks and titles at other places. Peerage does it for Britain, for instance, but I know there's a more general page about noble ranks in Europe in general.
Could you tell me where it actually is? I can't find it. --Kpalion 13:46, 18 Apr 2004 (UTC)

About American audience[edit]

I repeat. Please do not assume an American audience. This article is called "nobility". Baronets, esquire etc.. are not members of the nobility. The anachronistic comparisons to modern concepts of middle class etc.. are simply not appropriate. I have put a message on Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Peerage for people to come here and comment. Mintguy (T)

This business of suggesting comparions between feudal nobility and the United States is beyond ludicrous, it offends me both as an American and as a historian. America does not have a tiered system. I suppose it can look that way, but to suggest a feudal organization belies a great ignorance. Mackensen 14:50, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Hm.. I see you have something of a history with regard to adding less than entirely accurate information to articles. (Wikipedia:Vandalism_in_progress#User:Kenneth_Alan) I see no need for further discussion. Mintguy (T)


Scope of the article and removing info[edit]

A reasonable phrase from unreasonable quarrel above:

I assume from your bearing Mintguy, that ignoblity has no relation to the nobility, as you seem openly against including them referenced in an article together. Oh! Would that devalue the nobility's prominence??? A pity, not. They all deserve comparative analysis to demonstrate the intrinsic social values of each in relation to the others, showing the web of society, after all, without the ignobility to stomp on, there wouldn't be a nobility, Mintguy. Kenneth Alansson 16:28, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

About latest reverts: There was improper attempt to remove factual info (poor Baronets :-). If you think they don't fit this article, you must copy the info into another article, not just remove it altogether.
Now let me repeat my point once more, The title of the article is "Nobility". What one must do, is to (1) define the term properly (2) make separate artciles from the pieces of info taht don't fit and refer to them from here, possibly with brief summaries.

As for the web of society, there is the Social hierarchy article, with poor content, by the way. Mikkalai 17:05, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

So please, who can explain the difference between the notions "nobility", peerage, Sovereign? in particular, why "Baronets, esquire etc.. are not members of the nobility"? (the Baronet) article says only that baronet is not a title of peerage. Esquires are even more confusing. Please do so without removing info from wikipedia by bold editing. This explanation IMO is part of definition. Mikkalai 17:12, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

I understand that your comment about edit was as a joke. My only war actions were restoring info that was simply deleted without placing it elsewhere. The problem IMO is that all current active editors are not experts in the whole issue, for the whole world. Therefore please be more tolerant to each other's mistakes and misunderstandings. (for americans only: be smart, but not be smart ass :-) Just a few more logs into the fire: how does Indian caste system or Russian Table of Ranks fit here? (not even mentioned even in "Related articles") Mikkalai 17:49, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)
I think they, as different concepts with different names and their own articles, should be referred to in a "see also" context. Theanthrope 17:58, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)
Why do you find it necessary or acceptible to selectively insult americans? - Nunh-huh 17:52, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)
It seems Americans vacillate between thinking the rest of the world hates us and wanting to believe the rest of the world hates us. I don't know why this is but it's seemingly to justify the way we were acting anyway. It's a big planet, let's all chill out a bit. Theanthrope 17:58, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Thinking less globally, I was asking specifically why Mikkalai thought he should throw a gratuitous insult at americans onto this page, and why he thought it was appropriate. I don't think another personal opinion about Americans addresses that. I was specifically wondering if it's considered good Wikiquette to insult nationalities. If it is, perhaps we need to consider a rewrite of Wikiquette. -- Nunh-huh 18:06, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)
Sorry and apologize; it was badly phrased. The idea was something along the lines: an american would say "don't be a smart ass", while an English would insult you in the most proper and correct way (sorry, I cannot give a good example, being not of nobility and poorly bred :-). Mikkalai 18:19, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)
Really not a problem, I just see it a lot on Wikipedia and I don't think it's real helpful. In any case, it's probably a good thing not to know too many British insults :) - Nunh-huh 18:24, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)


The page is protected from removal of information that probably does not belong here, but is nowhere else. Let's be constructive. Mikkalai 18:01, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Mikkalai: you should not protect pages when you have been directly involved in an edit war for that page. Please remove the protection immediately!!!!!! Mintguy (T) 18:08, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

I have removed the protection. Mikkalai, please go through the usual channels if you want this protected. -- Decumanus | Talk 18:11, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

I really do not think that this pagr should be left with content such as the following nonsense:

Grand Duke, ruling² a grand duchy, akin to U.S. military commanders ruling military installations and vehicles overseas and in foreign, friendly or hostile territory, especially in times of war when martial law is proclaimed and/or invasion of another state results in toppling the native regime. It can also result from Nuclear-Biological-Chemical violence in war.
So I will revert it to the version without this and other deliberate nonsense added by the known vandal User:Kenneth Alan. Mikkalai, I suggest you take a look at Wikipedia:Requests for comment/Kenneth Alan now before you make any further judgements about what state this article should be left in. Mintguy (T)
I think the comparison to American elected offices is pretty silly. It doesn't need to be protected from removal. I wouldn't even call it "information". It's just someone's comparison of apples to oranges. The systems are different; comparing them is mostly meaningless. There are better ways to explain what a "baron" is. Capitalism does not equal feudalism. Try merging those two articles and you'll see that most people agree.
In case you didn't notice, together with "americanization" a lot of other useful information was stricken out. While I agree, it does not belong here, it should not have been stricken out totally. Mikkalai 18:43, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)
I didn't notice, in fact. I agree. You've done a good job keeping the good while removing the bad. Theanthrope 19:26, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)
I was just trying to add some missing femenine titles when i found this was locked. Can we sort this out soon, please? Theanthrope 18:16, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

First of all, the term in bold at the beginning of an article should be the same as the title. If you want to talk about Aristocratic heirarchy, please make a new article and sort out the ensuing mess there. The US comparison doesn't belong here. Theanthrope 18:29, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

I do have a possibly helpful suggestion. You might find it more useful to put detailed discussion in geographic subsections. The idea of nobility in Continental Europe is rather different from the idea and implementation in Britain, and different again from its correlates elsewhere. Breaking the details into geographic sections should minimize conflict, as you won't have to say only that which is true everywhere and always. - Nunh-huh 18:33, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)
Similar to my ideas above. This article should be the summary of the term, with occasional examples and comparison table. Detailed hierarchy must go elsewhere, since it is Eurocentric. What about Chinese, Indian, Inka, Russian nobility? Did they have this notion at all? Mikkalai 18:47, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)
A comparative study on different systems of social hierarchy in geographic and historical subsections would be a very good thing but it wouldn't really belong here. Nobility is just one of social strata typical for only one social system (namely, feudalism). So what I suggest is expanding the article on Social hierarchy which is little more than a stub now. Nobility should be solely about nobility and even links to articles like Caste don't belong here. List of ranks doesn't belong here either, it should be moved to Aristocratic ranks or something like this, or perhaps British ranks because it seems quite Anglocentric to me. --Kpalion 21:46, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)
British ranks are quite eloquently presented in British honours system and Peerage articles. Mikkalai

A piece that was unjustly lost[edit]

Instead of revert war I tried to cut out only "americanismus", but fount it difficult. Instead, I am putting here a piece that can be used anywhere else. Shame on you! Good bye my fair lords. Mikkalai 18:34, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)

This material is total nonsense. Gentry is part of the lower class? By any reasonable standard, all of these as low as Gentry are part of the upper class. And the definition of gentry and yeomanry is totally bogus and anachronistic. This is like a role-playing game definition of social classes. john 17:33, 9 Apr 2004 (UTC)
Do you have any idea what you are talking about? In England, it is very difficult to distinguish an esquire from a gentleman. They are both rich landowners who don't work. Knights, Baronets, and peers are frequently little different, except that they have titles, and may own more land (especially as you go up the scale). But it's a difference of quantity, not of quality. They are all upper class, and they all formed the ruling class of Britain up to 1911, or whenever, together. They intermarried. It was the same political class. And the gentry does not mean what you say it means - doctors and lawyers might be members of the gentry, but you are a gentleman by birth, not by attainments. Yeomanry you completely misunderstand. A yeoman is an independent landowner. They are fairly well-off, but not considered to be of high social rank. That is to say, they are middle class landowners. At any rate, these terms refer to rural English (especially) society. They can't be expanded to provide a discussion of social rank in general in a post-industrial society. They were already starting to be strained in the 19th century, when rich industrialists didn't really fit into the established categories, for instance. Neither did white collar workers, really. Why don't you read something beyond your RPG sourcebooks and come back later? john 06:02, 10 Apr 2004 (UTC)
The article is about the nobility not about a social class system in general. As such, all this material is irrelevant to begin with. But even as a description of a social class system in general, it doesn't work. We shouldn't be making broad generalizations like this, and trying to fit every kind of society into a class framework devised in 18th century Britain, to begin with. john 06:58, 10 Apr 2004 (UTC)
But the point is that you can't do that in some kind of generalized, contextless way. The role of the nobility in Britain today is different from their role two hundred years ago. Their role in France today is different yet again, and all these are different from their role in Poland in 1750. And all of these are different from the roles of a genuinely feudal nobility in, say, 1400. And all of these are different from the role of the Chinese nobility, or the Russian service nobility, and so on and so forth. john 07:33, 10 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Note: A foreigner has no specific legal status in a host country, however, may be subject to host laws and/or perhaps be extradited to home country for judicial proceedings. Foreigners with diplomatic immunity do not get subject to host laws, but general travelers and tourists are routinely treated by local means.

1) These princely subrulers are extremely influential and dominate almost everything the country has to deal with, good and bad. There isn't much to challenge them, even the royalty in current command, unless they are minors. They will often argue or agree as they feel like, with little sensitivity to pressure from those above them or below, regardless of what pressure is applied.
2) Loss of sovereignty or fief does not necessarily lead to loss of title. The position in the ranking table is however accordingly adjusted. The occurrence of fiefs has changed from time to time, and from country to country. For instance, dukes in England rarely had a duchy to rule.
3) The term Peer is used in Britain, but the division could be argued to be of general value. These ranks tend to be quite steady and quite popular, and although the inheritants of these titles are often secure in their holdings, if they oppose The Crown, (by generally group effort)they tend to have to rework their efforts towards the monarch to retain their title if their efforts are suppressed, or they will have their offices replaced and they will only be allowed to gain an honourary title at any further time in life.
4) Dukes who are not actually or formerly sovereign, such as all British, French, and Spanish dukes, or who are not sons of sovereigns, as titulary dukes in many other countries, would not be considered to be of princely rank.
5) Honourary nobility with inherited estates honoured by law, but holders of such titles can and do get stripped of such status if they fail to conform to the norms of their class and will become "common", if so. There is an immense amount of social pressure to conform at high standards here that other classes do not feel they need to apply themselves to, as consistency keeps their honours afloat.
6) Not nobility but included here to show comparison, and the worker class that supplants the comparatively small amount of nobility above them. Without them, the nobility would have no reason to exist.
7) Not nobility and presented to show what the loss of Commoner status immediately applies to, generally there is a time for parole during incarceration, but sometimes not, due to the severity of the crime(s) committed.

Liege, feudal strata[edit]

Badly phrased and placed piece:

A nobleman was bound to his liege by a sworn oath of allegiance. The liege could be the monarch or another noble, forming a hierarchy, usually with a king at the top. Some of the other strata of feudal society were priests, burghers (i.e. city inhabitant) and peasants (i.e. farmer).

  1. All were bound by allegiance, not just nobles.
  2. Nobles were not only in feudal society.
  3. The article is not about feudal society. Besides, priests stil exist. Mikkalai 18:53, 8 Apr 2004 (UTC)


What is the point of splitting this article so that the ranks of nobilitiy now appear at Royal and noble ranks ans styles at Royal and noble styles? This article was originally balkanized into Ranks of nobility and peerage Titles of nobility and noble. And now we have the same thing again! Just what is the point? These individual articles will soon once again contain much duplicated information. Please restore this article. Mintguy (T) 10:18, 19 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Reasons for splitting the article:
  • Ranks, titles and styles, as described in the table, are mostly a Western European phenomenon (though nobility as such is not) so leaving it here would be too Occidentalocentric.
  • There is much more to nobility than ranks and styles. In feudal socities, nobles played very wide and important political, economic and cultural roles -- this article may be still expanded with much relevant information, not just a table of ranks (a peripheric topic in fact).
  • People kept trying to include royal and other titles (which had nothing to do with nobility) in the table. Now they will be able to list all of them -- from emperor to whatever is at the bottom of the scale -- in the new article on both Royal and noble styles.
--Kpalion 10:34, 19 Apr 2004 (UTC)

I agree with Kpalion. This article ought to discuss nobility in general, a term which applies to numerous societies throughout the world. Specific details of systems of nobility in different countries of the world ought to go in specific articles on the nobility of those countries. We already have this for the British system in Peerage (although this title is probably anglocentric - there is/was a French peerage as well), but the rest of the world is decidedly sparsely covered. And, as Kpalion points out, noble titles are different from the status of nobility itself. In most countries in Europe, one can/could be noble without having any title. john 17:49, 19 Apr 2004 (UTC)

dab proposed[edit]

I was looking for information about the nobility of metals. Shouldn't there be a section on this page for this chemical process? If I find out anything on noble metals elsewhere, I'll post something here. - unsigned

You want noble metal. These are generally spoken of as a group, "noble metals", and the use of "nobility" to refer to them is rare, and I wouldn't expect "nobility" to reference metals any more than I'd expect "baseness" to. - Nunh-huh 00:48, 5 Nov 2004 (UTC)


We currently have Category:Nobility as well as Category:Noble families. This may need some cleanup. Cf. Category talk:Noble families. --Joy [shallot] 1 July 2005 23:42 (UTC)

Title conferral[edit]

Can a nobleman(Prince, Grand Duke, Duke, Marquess, Count, Viscount, Baron), besides Monarch(king/emperor) or Pope confer any noble title on a commoner ?

--Siyac 7 July 2005 11:19 (UTC)

No. – Kpalion (talk) 7 July 2005 09:52 (UTC)
Wrong. Sovereigns who are not kings, emperors or popes can grant titles of nobility. Such is the case in Luxembourg and was the case in many German grand duchies and duchies. Charles 19:33, 2 March 2006 (UTC)
Yes, but a monarch is not a nobleman. Kpalion 20:11, 2 March 2006 (UTC)
You neglected to say so. Grand dukes who are opnly noble do not exist. The context in which the original poster must have meant was that kings and emperors obviously could/can grant titles. Charles 01:16, 3 March 2006 (UTC)


I have a question:

If a British baron was granted the title of Prince of HRE, does this mean that he anwsers to nobody except HRE Emperor ? Since the title of Prince of HRE is directly subject to HRE emperor.

Siyac 14:32, 11 August 2005 (UTC)

No. Firstly, because not all princes of HRE was directly subject of Empire (and some counts was), and secondly because Lord of UK is/was subject of British Crown. Yopie 01:47, 17 December 2006 (UTC)

Editing required[edit]

I am sorry to arrive on this talk page with such a critical message, but I feel this article needs severe editing. I have read through the talk page, and it looks as though there is some confusion about the scope of the article and about how material should be split between similar articles. I would give it a go, but I don't know enough about the subject. But something has to be done. I ended up on this page following a redirect. I read the introduction:

The nobility represents, or has represented, the higher stratum of a society in which not only social classes are distinguished, but also formal estates, usually alongside the clergy. The most distinctive feature of nobilty is that once acquired, it is passed to descendants, possibly according to some rules. The word "noble" in "nobility" also means "doing an act worthy of respect" to people.

...and I had absolutely no idea what it meant. The rest of the article follows the same pattern as the introduction. It needs to decide whether it is talking about Europe or the world and whether post-chivalry or earlier; it needs referencing; and after that, it needs a severe copyedit.

  • Is it saying that to be noble, one must hold estate? (First sentence.)
  • What is a formal estate? How does it differ from the estate of non-noble people? Is it land?
  • What is usually alongside the clergy?
  • The most distinctive feature of nobility is that it can be passed on? But lots of things can be passed on, from shoes to copyright to books to money. This does not distinguish nobility very much.
  • The dictionary definition looks poorly-worded at best and simply wrong at worst. My small desk dictionary lists four senses as an adjective and two as a noun, but "doing an act worthy of respect" is none of them.

Going on to the first sub-section:

Initially nobility descended from chivalry (or warrior class) in the feudal stage of the development of a society.
  • The article begins by claiming that nobility is a quality. At least, I think that's what it's saying. Chivalry isn't a quality. It's a set of codified behaviour from a particular period of European history. What has this to do with conceptions of nobility in Fiji, central America or in the Bible (which has numerous references to noblemen in both OT and NT)?
Originally, knights or nobles were mounted warriors who swore allegiance to their sovereign and promised to fight for him in exchange for allocation of land (usually together with serfs
  • Again, context required. Is this also chivalry-related and Euro-specific, or can it reasonably be applied to, say, the Scythians, too?
The invention of the Musket slowly eliminated the privately owned and operated armies of nobles in feudal societies during the time period of the Military Revolution.
  • Quite apart from the grammar (really, armies composed of nobles? What a delightful image), surely the outlawing of private armies by monarchs had an equal effect in some countries? Henry VII of England did exactly that long before muskets went into widespread use.

The entire article is like this. The talk page suggests there has been some difficulty in the past in defining the scope and content, and I am sorry to rake up what may be a sensitive subject to some. I am also sorry that this message is so negative. I have tried to include examples of the sorts of things which might help the reader. Wikipedia has some really really good articles on matters related to this, and there is no reason why this article can't match them. This is why I have placed a {cleanup-rewrite} template on the article. It needs to decide whether it is talking about Europe or the world and whether post-chivalry or earlier; it needs referencing; and after that, it needs a comprehensive copyedit.

--Telsa ((t)(c)) 16:53, 7 February 2006 (UTC)

I agree with Telsa.--Counsel 21:08, 22 February 2006 (UTC)

I have rewritten large chunks of the article, including many of the sentences that you highlighted as inadequate. You also pointed out that the article needed to distinguish between those characteristics which apply to all nobles and those which apply only in Western/European nations; I have created a new section on "non-Western nobility" to address this problem. As I feel that I have solved all the major problems with the article, I have deleted the rewrite bar. Please read the article, and feel free to tell me (on my talk page) if you don't like my changes. Walton monarchist89 15:17, 14 March 2006 (UTC)


The term blue-blood redirects to the article. I would like to see some mention (perhaps an etymological history) of the term in this article. 14:03, 18 August 2006 (UTC)

It shouldn't redirect here; it's a slang term for nobility rather than a proper synonym. If you want to, please write an article on the topic yourself. Walton monarchist89 09:57, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

I'm not too happy abou8t the way the article stands today (2012.02.23)

“Blue blood is an English idiom recorded since 1834 for noble birth or descent; it is a translation of the Spanish phrase sangre azul, which described the Spanish royal family and other high nobility who claimed to be of Visigothic descent,[8]”

I don’t like this—the presentation makes it appear the citation supports both the origin of the term in Spanish AND that its appearance in English in 1834 was a translation. The cited work only talks of the Spanish phrase and not its arrival or coining in English.

So, while the term sangre azul may well have existed in Spanish for centuries, it does not appear in English until after porphyria. We’d really have to see that 1834 usage and know something about its author to have any idea of whether they were ‘translating a Spanish phrase’ or making a coinage, or both. It could be both because they might be making either overt or simply ‘knowing’ reference to porphyria. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:55, 23 February 2012 (UTC) (talk) 14:56, 23 February 2012 (UTC)

The term "sang bleu" exists as well in French. It refers to the pale skin of nobility (because they're "pure white" Europeans") and therefore their arteries are visible to the naked eye. The blood looks blue. (talk) 20:25, 18 April 2012 (UTC)

United States nobility[edit]

from the intro:

"Although the United States, like almost every society, has a privileged 'upper class' with great wealth and power, this does not entail a separate legal status"

  • cough* OJ Simpson

The US has a de-facto system of nobility -- and why shouldn't it?

De facto is not de jure. The United States Constitution expressly forbids states from granting titles of nobility, and also forbids those "holding an office of trust or profit under the United States" from "accepting any gift, emolument or title from a foreign King or Prince". Yes, the US has a privileged upper class with de facto hereditary status - but that isn't enough to make them noble. Nobility is a specific legal hereditary status; traditionally it must be conferred by a "fountain of honour", usually a king or prince. Social and economic status has nothing to do with actual nobility - in the past there have been nobles who have lost their family fortunes and lived in poverty. It is quite clear that there is no system of hereditary nobility in the United States. Walton monarchist89 10:01, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

(As for the Simpson affair, that's irrelevant. Commentators may feel that US citizens are treated differently in court on the grounds of their race, and indeed, this is probably true. But from a purely factual, verifiable legal perspective, all US citizens are equal before the law. Once again, de facto is not de jure. A word of warning: make sure your contributions are not politically slanted.) Walton monarchist89 10:04, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

The United States does in fact have a small colonial aristocracy which, although lacking legal status, enjoys some equivalent prestige. Examples are the Lee family and Randolph family of Virginia, and the Carroll family of Maryland, the last actually descending from the ancient Gaelic nobility. Then there is the Kennedy family, ennobled by the Irish government and by the Vatican in the 20th century. See also First Families of Virginia and Boston Brahmin. DinDraithou (talk) 19:24, 23 September 2009 (UTC)


There are absolutely no citations of the sources used in this article. How can the sources of the claims here be traced to anyone but the author(s)? Kemet 17:43, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

You will find no credible source to back this up because all Human Beings have Red Blood. I will challenge anyone to a debate of this issue. If any universal being has blood blue they should come visit me. -mapsurfer —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:06, 24 September 2008 (UTC)

External links to scam web sites[edit]

Someone (a Wiki user named 'Ghost rider1000') recently added an external link to a web site entitled "Royal Society of North America." This web site appears to ofter noble titles for sale. This would seem to almost certainly be some sort of a scam site. Can someone confirm this? -- and remove the external link if the site is a scam? -RobertBlacknut 06:43, 7 August 2007 (UTC)

I agree with you. This site is scam, without informational value. Yopie 09:40, 7 August 2007 (UTC)

The external links you seem to be referring to are gone, but more had appeared that seemed irrelevant; I removed them. Sounds like the external links from this page merit attention.

contradictio in terminis[edit]

Article Nobel: Nobility, a hereditary caste

This article: Nobility is a government-privileged title which may be either hereditary (see hereditary titles) or for a lifetime. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:46, 27 October 2008 (UTC)

Merging this Article with Ennoblement.[edit]

I would have to say that, as it stands, both Articles need some grammatical revisions.

Combining the two might be a good opportunity to do so, but it might be just as well to deal with them as separate entities, get "the bugs" worked out of each and then take a look at what's what.

And being the Grammatical stickler I am I would be remiss if I didn't mention that I would think that if it is decided to merge the Articles "Ennoblement" belongs within the Article on "Nobility", as Nobility is the broader term/concept.

Thank you for your time.


Rampant unicorn (talk) 05:56, 25 February 2010 (UTC)

Agree, nothing happening on this in 3 years, will perform the action if no one else does. (talk) 21:35, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
Not enough discussion. I am reverting the merge. Concept of ennoblement has a separate nobility. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| reply here 07:32, 19 May 2014 (UTC)

Status of the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia[edit]

In reference to Sir Thomas Innes of Learney's comments on the status of armorial bearings in Scotland, FactStraight (talk) is removing any references to the status of the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia in this article, claiming comments are not NPOV and use peacock terms. The comments concerned state that the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia is authoritative and may be cited in the courts, and are supported by references. The Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia is Scotland's version of the Halsbury's Statutes. It is cited in courts as high up as the House of Lords, the UK's highest court. See for example the following links for evidence of its citation in the courts: Blackburn v Cowie, Moncrieff and another v Jamieson and others and Regina v Manchester Stipendiary Magistrate and the Lord Advocate Ex Parte Granada Television Ltd (Search for 'Stair'). There are many others. Authoritative when used in the sense here is a description of its legal status in that it carries an authority when cited in the courts. This is shown in the Open University's description of the work (You have to scroll down to see this). So these comments are simply a factual description of the status of the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia and are thus demonstrative of a NPOV and are not peacock terms, as they are descriptive and supported by references. I do not believe this description should be deleted repeatedly. Editor8888 (talk) 03:36, 24 March 2010 (UTC)

Your edits are POV because they do not add relevant factual information (let alone "demonstrate the comments on the status of the Stair Memorial Encyclpaedia" -- who confers "status" on an encyclopedia?), but puffery: they are being inappropriately used to buttress one side of an argument (the current validity of Innes' opinion as to what constitutes "nobility" in Scotland). Simply let the quote speak for itself, and people can look up Innes and Stair to decide for themselves their "authoritativeness" (although I see that Wikipedia's article on the Stair encyclopedia is being suddenly "enhanced" to reflect its "authoritativeness"). Stair's general "authoritativeness" is not relevantly advanced in an article on "Nobility", and is off-topic. The contention that an encyclopedia has been cited in legal cases is meaningless and misleading because anything can be so cited -- and is then subject to rebuttal. Your claim that it is "authoritative" is not a declaration from either law or judge about Innes's opinion that there are non-peerage holders who are "nobility", but is a generic opinion about Stair intended to give the impression that Innes is authoritative because Stair reflects his POV, and that Stair has been cited judicially so Innes is somehow authoritative on this particular point. Peacockery is inappropriate and will be deleted. It isn't somehow acceptable because it can be referenced: it is how the referenced material is used that determines whether it is deletable exaggeration. Stop mixing opinion and fact to promote a POV that has been doubted by a judge of the Court of Session and increasingly challenged in recent years. FactStraight (talk) 12:41, 24 March 2010 (UTC)
Thank you for outlining the basis for your view. I suggest you read this link. You will see that status is conferred on this encylopaedia by the Law Society of Scotland, through this official Scottish professional body's patronage of its production. Do not let the word 'encyclopaedia' confuse you; this is not simply one of any number of legal reference works, but is an authoritative statement of the Laws of Scotland. It is not cited in court as anyone may be and is not open to rebuttal. It would be necessary to demonstrate how and why it didn't apply. It is an authoritative statement of the law. If you are familiar with Halsbury's Statutes in England, you should know that Stair has the same status in Scotland. This is not opinion, but fact. Someone with expertise in this area would know this. The recent wording of the Nobility article was not neutral as it had been manipulated in a way to deny the present legal position as expounded in Scots law and to give undue emphasis to a single scholar who admits his opinions 'are far from definitive'. To accentuate this over the Laws of Scotland, where is the credibility in that? Also, the comments you refer to in the Court of Session were obiter, and the Court of the Lord Lyon has first jurisdiction over nobiliary matters. The article on the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia was not "enhanced", but created as none existed. Scots legal scholars and lawyers are free to verify its content. Weak insinuations will add no substance to a misunderstanding of the status of an important legal work. Nevertheless, I agree with you that a discussion about the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia is off topic for this article itself, so I have limited my amendment to state its provenance (i.e. who commissioned the publication). As you say, it is for interested parties to explore for themselves the relative authority of the sources. In fact other sources, such as the articles on Innes of Learney and Scottish heraldry, make it clear that nobility, or the noblesse, in Scotland encompasses what is known as the gentry in England. Innes of Learney's adjudications need to be understood in this sense and in the knowledge that the term is employed differently in different contexts. Editor8888 (talk) 13:42, 24 March 2010 (UTC)
FactStraight (talk) has now removed the note stating that the Law Society of Scotland sponsored the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia despite a reference to the Law Society's journal confirming the same, and has also removed the link to the encyclopaedia's wikipedia page. FactStraight wrote 'Stair has no special standing in Scots law or courts & didn't specifically commission cited article'. It was stated that the Law Society, not Stair, sponsored the Encyclopaedia (not the article), which the source confirms to be the case. Also, the claim that Stair has no special standing in Scots law or courts is incorrect. FactStraight dismissed this source as simply an advertisement of the publisher and implied it had no value as a response. This source confirms 'the Encyclopaedia ranks among that select group of publications which is cited with approval before the courts' (echoed elsewhere, e.g. Amazon). If FactStraight knew the relevant law, he would know that an advert could not legally make such a claim were it not true, in addition to being aware of the status of the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia. This is clearly a veiled attempt at denying the Scots law on this issue, by surpressing the weight of the law in question. I had hoped the compromise suggested in my last message would be adhered to, but all edits have been reverted under the excuse of WP policies which really should not apply in this instance. I am surprised by the dishonesty I have experienced here. Editor8888 (talk) 21:48, 24 March 2010 (UTC)
At 05:35 on 3rd November 2008 FactStraight (talk) wrote (here): 'It is usually considered a no-no on English Wikipedia to revert an edit that has a footnoted source attached: there is no Wiki rule against using an "obscure" source, if it can be accessed by the public. Nor is there a rule against using a "biased" source, as long as the source does not attempt to conceal its bias.' Editor8888 (talk) 22:42, 24 March 2010 (UTC)
Inner Temple, one of the four Inns of Court of Barristers of England & Wales, has published a newsletter (Section: Focus on the Scots Law Collection) in which they refer to the status of the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia. Editor8888 (talk) 22:44, 25 March 2010 (UTC)

Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia[edit]

Hi, I would please like some outside eyes to come and see whether my wish to either (1) link the words 'Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia' in this article to the article of that name, (2) add the words 'which was sponsored by the Law Society of Scotland', or (3) add the words 'the Scottish equivalent of Halsbury's Statutes, which may be cited before the courts' is a reasonable one.

I am getting no engagement on the talk page, other than with one user with whom I am in dispute. I have posted good quality links as evidence of the above, but one or two users wish to suppress this information, and no one else is analysing the evidence. Please spend a minute to come along and help. Thank you. Editor8888 (talk) 07:06, 26 March 2010 (UTC)

I propose that in the following text, one of the subsequent proposals is adopted and invite comments on the same.

An opinion of Innes of Learney makes an observation of the system in use in Scotland, differentiating it from many other European traditions, in that legal armorial bearings which are entered in the Public Register of All Arms and Bearings in Scotland by warrant of the Lord Lyon King of Arms are by statute "Ensigns of Nobility". However, this opinion is challenged by a scholar.[1] Innes of Learney's perspective is, however, accepted in the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia.[2]


  1. The text 'Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia' be linked to the Wikipedia page of the same name.
  2. The words 'which was sponsored by the Law Society of Scotland' be added to this paragraph.
  3. The words 'the Scottish equivalent of Halsbury's Statutes, which may be cited before the courts' be added.


  1. ^ The Lord Lyon and his Jurisdiction
  2. ^ Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia, 'HERALDRY' (Volume 11), 3, THE LAW OF ARMS. 1613. The nature of arms.

Supporting arguments[edit]

  1. Per policy at Wikipedia:Avoid peacock terms: A peacock term 'merely promote[s] the subject of the article without imparting verifiable information'. My proposals impart verifiable information.
  2. Per policy at Wikipedia:Avoid peacock terms#Do not avoid the important facts: Do not hide the important facts: 'In some contexts, the fame or reputation of a subject may be an objective and relevant question, better supported by a direct source than by drawing inferences indirectly based on other facts (which would constitute original research or synthesis). A sourced statement that the subject is "famous", "well known", "important", "influential", or the like may be appropriate, particularly to establish a subject's notability in an introductory sentence or paragraph.'
  3. Per policy at Wikipedia:NPOV: 'All Wikipedia articles must be written from a neutral point of view, representing fairly, proportionately, and as far as possible without bias, all significant views that have been published by reliable sources.' It is fair and proportionate, and without bias, to identify the present legal situation as the same. This section of the article is written as though Innes of Learney's view is just opinion. It is actually law. Innes of Learney was a judge and a minister of the Crown when he pronounced these views. They were decrees of his court, the Court of the Lord Lyon. As the article seeks to suppress this, it is fair and proportionate to emphasise the legal strength of the source that supports his view.
  4. Per policy at Wikipedia:Verifiability: 'The threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth'. While I argue that I am trying to see that the truth appears in this article, this is not the criterion for the addition of comments. Comments should be verifiable and those that I propose are.

Supporting evidence[edit]

Survey of reliable sources[edit]

  • Inner Temple: Newsletter of the Honourable Society of the Inner Temple. The section of this newsletter entitled 'Focus on the Scots Law Collection' confirms the status of the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia, stating: 'Our collection of the authoritative “institutional writings”, frequently cited in Scottish courts, is more or less complete, and includes the Institutions of Stair and the Commentaries of Hume and Bell. The core of the text book collection is The Laws of Scotland: Stair memorial encyclopaedia. This is to Scots law what Halsbury’s Laws is to English'
  • Law Society of Scotland: Online Journal of the Law Society of Scotland. This journal confirms that the Law Society of Scotland sponsored the production of this encyclopaedia
  • Wildy & Sons Ltd Legal Bookshop: Product information. This declares 'the Encyclopaedia ranks among that select group of publications which is cited with approval before the courts' (echoed elsewhere, e.g. Amazon)
  • Open University: Open University's description of the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia. If you scroll down to find it in the alphabetical list at the foot, you will see it is described as 'authoritative'
  • GlobaLex: GlobaLex. Sarah Carter, Law Librarian at the University of Kent at Canterbury, writes: 'The Laws of Scotland: Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia, Butterworths 1987- is the definitive Scottish legal encyclopaedia'
  • Australian Law Postgraduate Network: ALPN. This states: 'The Laws of Scotland: Stair Memorial Encyclopedia provides a Scottish equivalent to Halsbury's'

Discussion of proposals with a view to developing a consensus (please refer to sources)[edit]

I favour option 3 as this indicates the publication's legal status. Option 1 should be a bare minimum and I think whoever deleted the link acted in breach of Wikipedia's policies. Option 2 is verifiable, as is 3. (Proposer) Editor8888 (talk) 15:00, 29 March 2010 (UTC)

Posted by Editor8888 (talk) 08:09, 26 March 2010 (UTC)

I think this is all rather energetically missing the point. As Velde describes, "[Innes] was able to expound many of his theories in court but not under review of his superior court, and get them published in the judicial record." Their appearance in Stair is a natural corollary of this fact, which I do not think is disputed by either of the parties here. What people have asserted, as best I can make out, is that Innes' authority for making some of these rulings is suspect, and there is reason to believe that they might not withstand legal challenge were one to arise. In other words, including them in Stair reflects a soundness of form as a legal judgment, but not necessarily in the reasoning behind them.
As a broader point, is the term "nobility" in Scotland really used outside of, say, the purchasers of feudal baronies, to refer to any armiger? If not, it seems that dragging in Innes' judgments really does more to confuse the issue for the reader than anything. Choess (talk) 16:12, 29 March 2010 (UTC)
You seem to accept in the above that Innes of Learney's position is the law, but that it may not stand up to challenge in a higher court. Surely that means that his position is the law until it is successfully challenged? My point is that the article does not communicate this at present. By saying "An opinion of Innes of Learney" it appears to reduce the present legal position to pure opinion. I do not think this constitutes a NPOV, especially as the Court of the Lord Lyon produced diplomas of nobility for non-peerage armigers before Innes of Learney was at the Lyon Court. Also, I cannot see any justification for removing the link to the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia entry. Can you justify this? In addition, why has the debate been moved from the status of the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia, which is what FactStraight was denying and removing from the article? You do not seem to deny Stair's status. This article was clearly biased (see here: [1]) before any mention of the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia was made, as the present legal position was being denied through being described as only "opinion" and citing "scholars" (in reality just one in referenced sources) questioning this "opinion". Editor8888 (talk) 17:21, 29 March 2010 (UTC)

FactStraight has replaced the link to the article on the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia. This gives people the opportunity to investigate for themselves the merit of both links: the scholar's point of view and the weight of the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia. Accordingly, the article now presents a NPOV, so I am happy to close my request that the text be amended any further. Editor8888 (talk) 20:21, 31 March 2010 (UTC)

Esquires & gentry not nobles[edit]

While all continental nobles, titled or not and "armigerous" or not, are entitled in Britain at the least to the rank of esquire, Britons entitled to the rank of esquire but who are not also peers are not legally members of the British nobility. See "Esquire", Encyclopaedia Britannica, eleventh edition, volume 9, pp. 775-776. Moreover, the following quote is of relevant note: "'In a word, the growth of the peerage hindered the existence in England of any nobility in the continental sense of the word. The esquires, knights, lesser barons, even the remote descendants of peers, that is, the noblesse of other countries, in England remained gentlemen--but not noblemen, simple commoners, that is, without legal advantage over their fellow commoners who had no jus imaginum to boast of. There can be no doubt that the class in England which answers to the noblesse of other lands is the class which bears coat-armour, the gentry strictly so called.'1[footnote] This statement is mainly interesting as expressing the late Professor Freeman's view. It is, however, open to serious criticism. Coat-armour was in itself not necessarily a badge of nobility at all. It could be, and was, worn by people with no pretensions to be 'gentlemen,' and this is true both of England and the continent...The claim of the heralds to make 'gentry' depend on the bearing of coat-armour, and the right to this to depend upon grant or recognition by themselves as officers of the crown, is of comparatively late growth." Nobility, Encyclopaedia Britannica, eleventh edition, volume 19, page 728. FactStraight (talk) 12:32, 31 March 2010 (UTC)

Thank you for posting this FactStraight. It appears to conflate English with British a little. Note the first sentence states that "Britons entitled to the ranks of esquire but who are not also peers are not legally members of the British nobility", whereas the source later claims, "the noblesse of other countries in England remained gentlemen". Scotland has a noblesse and Scotland is not England. There is a different legal system in Scotland, and it is under this system that coat-armour has a different status.
The footnote clearly points to burgher arms, which have never been claimed to carry nobiliary status. As to the actions of heralds, where that herald is a judge, as in the case of the Lord Lyon King of Arms, such decisions he makes become law.
Letters Patent for ordinary armigers in Scotland until very recently (2008) declared that the armiger "and his successors in the same are, amongst all Nobles and in all Places of Honour to be taken, numbered, accounted and received as Nobles in the Noblesse of Scotland".[1] This was the ordinary wording.
Since then, the Lord Lyon has now much more sensibly chosen to cite his authority to grant Arms instead of including this nobiliary clause. He therefore presently states his statutory right to grant Arms to "Virtuous and Well Deserving Persons" [who thus become known (nobilis) on receipt of the grant of Arms]. There has been no change in the legal status of Arms in Scotland, yet it seems wise to deter petitioners who petition for Arms solely in desire of a declaration of their nobility. Becoming part of Scotland's noblesse or untitled nobility should be incidental to being found Virtuous and Well deserving, not the purpose of petitioning for a grant.
I am pleased to see the link to the article on the Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia return and feel happy that that section now carries a NPOV. Editor8888 (talk) 20:15, 31 March 2010 (UTC)


  1. ^ Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia, 'HERALDRY' (Volume 11), 3, THE LAW OF ARMS. 1613. The nature of arms.


Please re-read this grammatically ugly and barely comprehensible lede as it now exists. (The emphasis is mine.):

« Nobility is a state-privileged status [define: status] which is generally hereditary. The privileges associated with nobility may constitute substantial advantages over or relative to non-nobles, or may be largely honorary (e.g. precedence), but are maintained, or at least officially acknowledged, by law or government. Titles of nobility have often been associated with present or past monarchies, but nobility also existed in such republics as the Dutch Provinces, Genoa and Venice, and remains part of the legal social structure of, e.g. San Marino in Europe. Hereditary titles often distinguish nobles from non-nobles, although in many nations most of the nobility have been un-titled, and a hereditary title need not indicate nobility (e.g. baronet). »

Will someone PLEASE completely rewrite this. It is unclear, full of ambiguity, and contains weasel words; simply hideous. With all of the books written on « nobility », surely some talented wordsmith can create a better definition. (Please do not forget to identify your reliable sources.) Thank you for your time and effort to improve this. Charvex (talk) 22:08, 29 October 2010 (UTC)

I rewrote a lot of it, because most of it is just wrong. I will get some sources when I have more time, and rewrite most of this article with sources. Tinynanorobots (talk) 21:04, 26 June 2011 (UTC)

Noble Classes[edit]

In the English speaking world we tend to view things with a skew towards the British system. In this system, titles are passed by primogeniture, the term peer and noble are used interchangeably, and there is little recognition of the untitled nobility. However, most European nations don't have peers, titles are inherited by more than one offspring, and there is an untitled nobility, even in Britain. The minor nobility could be said to include armiger in Scotland. So people categorized as commoners because they are not peers are still noble. (talk) 17:29, 3 June 2011 (UTC)


this article lacks sources, and a good definition of nobility. I think it is largely in part because people edit based on their own ideas of what nobility means, and do not discuss it. Ideas about nobility has changed over time, and vary from place to place. Additionally, there remains conflicting ideas between different scholars, as well as the general use of the word. This is an encyclopedia article, and therefore should focus on the more technical and scholarly views, and merely acknowledge the popular use of the word. Anyway, since the method here seems to simply edit, that's what I will do, but forgive me if I go against the precedent of backing up my edits with unsourced and unfounded assertions. Tinynanorobots (talk) 23:02, 6 August 2011 (UTC)

adding an image of coat of arms to infobox nobility[edit]

Please see Template talk:Infobox nobility.--Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 16:35, 26 August 2011 (UTC)

Removed paragraph about blue blood[edit]

Moliere used sangbleu in 1666 (La Misanthrope), and Voltaire in 1782 (Des delits ed des peines). By the way, Voltaire reports the expression as having being already in use in 1181, during Philip II reign, but it doesn't report the source. Queen Victoria was born in 1819, and crowned in 1837. There is no way Queen Victoria's descendants emophily has anything to do with this expression. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:22, 7 May 2012 (UTC)

--> Paragraph about 'absorbing silver to make blood look blue by using silverware' seems suspect. Citation needed. You can absorb silver by ingestion and it can make the skin turn grey/blue in colour, but large amounts are needed and doubtful that this could happen simply by using silver spoons — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:14, 13 April 2013 (UTC)

Ways Peasants can earn Nobility Titles[edit]

There were certain possible ways how a peasant could earn their badges rights to nobleship titles, since the Modern Age, Renaissance, Middle Ages, the Iron Ages, and as far as throughout the ancient Bronze ages.

  • Any peasant, by their own right of use or in times of emergency, can or possibly have to join the military, to protect their kingdom from invasion. Possibly, if one person or few still keep their position in the military, or some even protect a high officer, general, a relative of a noble family, or even the King in battle(worthy grant of a title), the soldier may have the right to become a high ranking officer, or unexpectedly in the Middle Ages, earn the title of Knight as an automatic commission to become a noble, although, the soldier will still have to go through the ceremony to become a knight, it was worth it, at the end of the ceremony and believing you made your country, family, and HONOR sacred. There are same stories with the Samurai. There have been reports of children of peasants secretly exchanged adoption to noble families so they can be safe from invasion and expand the land to prosperity by making them knights or samurai.

The earning of honorary title similar to stories of Joan of Arc, and Genghis Khan(started out as a noble, but was later captured to slavery, and later became high ranking official, to finally as an Emperor of Mongolia)

  • Any peasant may have the right to serve as a religious person. Most monk travellers would find the homeless and convince them to join a priesthood, after being initiated as a monk, nun, or priestess, they need not worry about the sickness and hunger, for they will eventually, know about karma, medicine, and trust in spirituality. If one does receive great admiration by the church, synagogue, mosque, temple, and other sanctuaries, they may become a higher authority in a religious council. Possibly, even become Bishop, Preacher, Imam Khatib, Rabbi, Sangha, and other clergy.

A good example of a person is Pope Pius X.

  • Any peasant may have found new land in a new world, or region may own the land, struck a gold or diamond mine, or even a water spring or geyser, and become instantly rich, earn the laborer employees and become a tycoon person.

A good example is the founder of the city of Tombstone, in Arizona, Ed Schieffelin.

  • Any peasant if they have to earn those characteristics, maybe used as a great singer, and may become the lead singer in a musical choir, or a become a great musician, actor, writer, and artist, as well as creating inventions; with these talents, and extra money, as well as becoming notable, may earn the title as a noble.

Examples would be William Ostler, actor of the Globe Theatre and scattered Elizabethan Theatres and was greatly used by director William Shakespeare started out as an apprentice and later actor. Sacharias Jansen who has being also credited for inventing the first truly compound microscope. Isaac Newton famous English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, natural philosopher, alchemist, and theologian.

With earnings may come reward and wealth, with wealth may come class titles. Many ways how peasants may earn or secretly adopted the commission of a nobility title. -- (talk) 15:38, 4 February 2013 (UTC)

Elevation to the Nobility[edit]

Which countries still allow a commoner to be elevated to the hereditary nobility ? (talk) 00:52, 21 July 2013 (UTC)

The King of Spain and the King of the Belgians still routinely grant new titles of nobility to commoners. In the Netherlands, new hereditary titles can now be granted by law only to members of the Royal House (including spouses who were previously commoners), or former members of the Royal House within 3 months of their losing that status (the late Prince Friso e.g. was created graaf van Oranje-Nassau, a hereditary title in male line, after being excluded upon his marriage from the Royal House). It is still legally possible though for the King of the Netherlands to admit someone into the Dutch nobility by recognition of a title that a Dutch family had by right prior to 1795 ( there were only two cases like that in the past 20 years, I believe, both at the rank of baron). Until 2009, the Dutch monarch could also incorporate into the Dutch nobility a foreign title of a person who was a naturalized citizen of the Netherlands or whose father was a naturalized citizen, but that is no longer possible.
In Denmark and the UK, hereditary titles of nobility like duke or count/earl nowadays are also granted only to members of the Royal Family, but, at least in the UK, as far as I know, there is no legal impediment to creating a new hereditary peerage for a commoner outside the Royal Family. (talk) 12:52, 22 August 2013 (UTC)
Based on our articles on the British Peerage, the last hereditary peerage for a commoner was the title of Earl of Stockton, created in 1984. The first Earl being Harold Macmillan. No such creations for more recent Prime Ministers:
  • Alec Douglas-Home inherited the title of 14th Earl of Home in 1951, and no higher title was created for him.
  • Harold Wilson was created "Baron Wilson of Rievaulx" in 1983, a non-hereditary life peerage.
  • Edward Heath never rose to any peerage.
  • James Callaghan was created "Baron Callaghan of Cardiff", in 1987, a non-hereditary life peerage.
  • Margaret Thatcher was created "Baroness Thatcher of Kesteven" in 1992, a non-hereditary life peerage.
  • John Major has yet to rise to a peerage.
  • Tony Blair has yet to rise to a peerage.
  • Gordon Brown has yet to rise to a peerage. He continues to serve as a Member of Parliament and offers for Peerages are typically presented shortly before or shortly after retiremnt from all political offices.
  • David Cameron has yet to rise to a peerage, and it would be unusual if an active PM receives a peerage. Dimadick (talk) 17:06, 22 August 2013 (UTC)


There seems to be an obvious misunderstanding in this section of the French seigneuries with the English lord. One and the other have actually nothing in common. In France, throughout the ancien régime, it was customary to designate the owner of an estate as the seigneur or sire of that estate. That estate could be sold or bought, and so naturally the new owner would take up that designation. But landownership (the respective seigneurie) did not of itself confer any nobility upon the owner, no more than being a property landlord in Britain today confers any nobility whatsoever.

Similarly, the creation of a title, even by letters patent, could be made upon any subject of the King of France without conferring or confirming nobility. A comte de X could be so created by express wish of the Crown -- the X in this case standing most frequently for a previously existing property, a seigneurie. But neither property nor title represented the existence of any previous or current ennoblement (anoblissement). Furthermore, should the above-mentioned property be sold, the purchase would of course allow the new owner the respective seigneurie. But the same could not be said of the associated title (comte de X), which remained legally with the previous owner, and which would eventually be passed on to his descendants. Any examples contrary to this rule were the regular subject of prosecution.

In France, nobility is with very few known exceptions only traditional and transmitted exclusively through the male line. Out of the historical nobility, noble families in France today are simply those subsistantes. In such cases, nobility results from one or more ancestors in the male line being explicitly described in letters patent as Noble homme or gentilhomme or a similar designation. These designations often date back to the fourteenth century (if not to an earlier date), as attested by the numerous maintenues de noblesse that became compulsory in the 1660s for those with inherited rights of succession, as well as by individual preuves de noblesse made by those in the service of the King and the Royal Family, and by the Honneurs de la Cour, which were granted to the old nobility.

Normally the prerogative of noble homme was exclusively granted to individuals descending already from a known line of esquires (écuyers). In this sense, it represented the recognition of nobility to an individual by the sovereign. In contrast, the term anobli (lit. "ennobled") was also used, but mainly for those newly-entered into the rank of nobility, which is what ennoblement actually means (anoblissement). In other words, ennoblement proper applies mostly to those who had recently gained honour from the sovereign through the individual valour of their service to the Crown.

Finally, and in tandem with this topic, it would also be worthwhile noting the differences in France between the nobility of ancienne extraction chevaleresque (before the fifteenth century), of ancienne extraction (fifteenth century), and of extraction (the sixteent century), the latter being most often associated with one or more cases of ennoblement. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:06, 8 January 2014 (UTC)

Copyright problem removed[edit]

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Nobility versus royalty[edit]

There is a common misconception among persons less familiar with the subjects that nobility (called peerage in Britain) and royalty (called royalty all over) are the same thing. This article would do well in not supporting that misconception and in making it clear in the lede that the two are distinctly different subjects. I have tried once, describing what is "normal", and will now try again, asking that I not be reverted but helped to create this needed clarity. --SergeWoodzing (talk) 04:18, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

I concur. FactStraight (talk) 19:13, 29 December 2015 (UTC)