morganatic

adjective
mor·​ga·​nat·​ic | \ˌmȯr-gə-ˈna-tik \

Definition of morganatic 

: of, relating to, or being a marriage between a member of a royal or noble family and a person of inferior rank in which the rank of the inferior partner remains unchanged and the children of the marriage do not succeed to the titles, fiefs, or entailed property of the parent of higher rank

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from morganatic

morganatically \-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb

Did You Know?

Although the deprivations imposed on the lower-ranking spouse by a morganatic marriage may seem like a royal pain in the neck, the word morganatic actually comes from a word for a marriage benefit. The New Latin term morganatica means "morning gift" and refers to a gift that a new husband traditionally gave to his bride on the morning after the marriage. So why was the New Latin phrase matrimonium ad morganaticam, which means literally "marriage with morning gift," the term for a morganatic marriage? Because it was just that - the wife got the morning gift, but that's all she was entitled to of her husband's possessions.

First Known Use of morganatic

1728, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for morganatic

New Latin matrimonium ad morganaticam, literally, marriage with morning gift

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about morganatic

Share morganatic

Listen to Our Podcast about morganatic

Statistics for morganatic

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for morganatic

The first known use of morganatic was in 1728

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on morganatic

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with morganatic

Comments on morganatic

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

WORD OF THE DAY

a typical or ideal example

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

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!