\ ˈər(-ə)l How to pronounce earl (audio) \

Definition of earl

: a member of the British peerage ranking below a marquess and above a viscount

Other Words from earl

earldom \ ˈər(-​ə)l-​dəm How to pronounce earl (audio) \ noun

Examples of earl in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Eventually, Edward caved and agreed to strip Piers of his title as earl of Cornwall and exile him. Anne Thériault, Longreads, 21 June 2022 Meghan joined the royal family as a 36-year-old biracial American actress; Diana, as the 20-year-old daughter of a British earl. Phil Boucher, PEOPLE.com, 1 July 2022 The Kentucky Derby and all the other Derbys around the world take their name from the earl. William Booth, Washington Post, 4 June 2022 Her parents chose more subdued royal titles and, with the permission of the Queen, gave their children titles in the style of an earl rather than prince and princess, according to The Independent. Cnn Staff, CNN, 2 June 2022 Beneath the crane is Villa Altachiara, a 30-room mansion built in the late 19th century by a British earl. New York Times, 1 June 2022 So when Michael becomes an earl and Francesca is suddenly single, one passionate night might prove that these two are meant to be. Leah Campano, Seventeen, 24 Mar. 2022 The object of his affections, Sophie, is a humble earl's daughter who's treated like a servant by her cold stepmother. Emily Burack, Town & Country, 3 Apr. 2022 Though the daughter of an earl, Sophie has been relegated to the role of servant by her disdainful stepmother. Chaise Sanders, Country Living, 25 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'earl.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of earl

12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for earl

Middle English erl, from Old English eorl warrior, nobleman; akin to Old Norse jarl warrior, nobleman

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Time Traveler for earl

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The first known use of earl was in the 12th century

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Last Updated

23 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Earl.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/earl. Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for earl


\ ˈərl How to pronounce earl (audio) \

Kids Definition of earl

: a member of the British nobility who ranks below a marquess and above a viscount


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