esquire

noun
es·​quire | \ ˈe-ˌskwī(-ə)r How to pronounce esquire (audio) , i-ˈskwī(-ə)r How to pronounce esquire (audio) \

Definition of esquire

1 : a member of the English gentry ranking below a knight
2 : a candidate for knighthood serving as shield bearer and attendant to a knight
3 used as a title of courtesy often by attorneys usually placed in its abbreviated form after the surnameJohn R. Smith, Esq.
4 archaic : a landed proprietor

First Known Use of esquire

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for esquire

Middle English, from Anglo-French esquier squire, from Late Latin scutarius, from Latin scutum shield; akin to Old Irish sciath shield

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about esquire

Time Traveler for esquire

Time Traveler

The first known use of esquire was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for esquire

Cite this Entry

“Esquire.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/esquire. Accessed 19 Jan. 2021.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for esquire

esquire

noun
es·​quire | \ ˈes-ˌkwīr How to pronounce esquire (audio) \

Legal Definition of esquire

used as a title of courtesy for lawyers usually placed in its abbreviated form after the name and capitalized John R. Smith, Esq. Jane L. Smith, Esq.

History and Etymology for esquire

Middle French escuier squire, from Late Latin scutarius shield bearer, from Latin scutum shield

More from Merriam-Webster on esquire

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for esquire

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about esquire

Comments on esquire

What made you want to look up esquire? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Words of Snow and Ice Quiz

  • image1037863653
  • Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!