noble

adjective
no·​ble | \ ˈnō-bəl How to pronounce noble (audio) \
nobler\ ˈnō-​b(ə-​)lər How to pronounce noble (audio) \; noblest\ ˈnō-​b(ə-​)ləst How to pronounce noble (audio) \

Definition of noble

 (Entry 1 of 2)
1a : possessing outstanding qualities : illustrious was a noble king
b : famous, notable noble deeds
2 : of high birth or exalted rank : aristocratic … my sire is of a noble line …— Samuel Taylor Coleridge noble families
3a : possessing very high or excellent qualities or properties noble wine
b : very good or excellent See that there be a noble supper provided …— R. B. Sheridan
4 : grand or impressive especially in appearance noble edifice a noble cathedral
5 : possessing, characterized by, or arising from superiority of mind or character or of ideals or morals : lofty a noble ambition a noble cause
6 : chemically inert or inactive especially toward oxygen a noble metal such as platinum — compare base entry 3 sense 2a

noble

noun
Definition of noble (Entry 2 of 2)
1 : a person of noble rank or birth
2 : an old English gold coin equivalent to 6 shillings and 8 pence

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from noble

Adjective

nobleness \ ˈnō-​bəl-​nəs How to pronounce noble (audio) \ noun
nobly \ ˈnō-​blē How to pronounce noble (audio) also  -​bə-​lē \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for noble

Adjective

moral, ethical, virtuous, righteous, noble mean conforming to a standard of what is right and good. moral implies conformity to established sanctioned codes or accepted notions of right and wrong. the basic moral values of a community ethical may suggest the involvement of more difficult or subtle questions of rightness, fairness, or equity. committed to the highest ethical principles virtuous implies moral excellence in character. not a religious person, but virtuous nevertheless righteous stresses guiltlessness or blamelessness and often suggests the sanctimonious. wished to be righteous before God and the world noble implies moral eminence and freedom from anything petty, mean, or dubious in conduct and character. had the noblest of reasons for seeking office

Examples of noble in a Sentence

Adjective He was a man of noble character. It was noble of her to come forward with this information. Noun an elite school for children of nobles
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective While operational efficiency is a noble goal, the customer always comes first. Trisha Price, Forbes, "Think Small: Why Micro-Transformation Is A Winning Strategy," 3 Mar. 2021 Now, with the vigor of a prosecutor, Seidule dismantles the near-sacred beliefs among many Southerners that the Civil War was a noble cause to preserve a way of life that benefitted everyone. Jeff Rowe, Star Tribune, "Review: A military writer topples the Robert E. Lee statue," 26 Jan. 2021 Give the entrepreneurs of Eat Just, and their many counterparts in this field, credit for noble purpose. Matthew Scully, National Review, "Hello Cultured Meat, Goodbye to the Cruelty of Industrial Animal Farming," 17 Jan. 2021 The pursuit of truth is a noble goal of journalism ... . Mike Masterson, Arkansas Online, "OPINION | MASTERSON ONLINE: Credibility vital," 27 Dec. 2020 Her scathingly funny stories underscore the contrast between the institution’s noble, peacekeeping cause and its culture of soul-crushing, petty bureaucracy. Los Angeles Times, "Review: Still decorous and still scathing: Shirley Hazzard’s timeless tales collected," 4 Nov. 2020 Spruks expounded on the noble goal of reciprocity but changed few minds. Harvey Solomon, Smithsonian Magazine, "When the Greenbrier and Other Appalachian Resorts Became Prisons for Axis Diplomats," 21 Feb. 2020 The goal of prioritizing health care and other first-line workers is politically noble, and thus easy to defend. Martin Shell, STAT, "With Covid-19 vaccines, ‘fair’ isn’t always fair enough," 12 Feb. 2021 Healing, reconciliation, and avoiding more violence are all noble and necessary goals. Jonathan M. Katz, The New Republic, "Accountability Is the Cure for an Ailing Democracy," 20 Jan. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Margaret was removed from power and forced into exile while John Stewart, the Duke of Albany—a pro-French, anti-England noble favored by Parliament, who also happened to be Margaret's late husband's cousin—took over as regent for her son, James V. Liz Cantrell, Town & Country, "How Margaret Tudor Became One of the Most Influential Queens in British History," 9 Oct. 2020 Menlo Castle Menlo Castle in western Ireland was built in the 16th century as an estate for the Blake family of English nobles. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, "Watch Seven Medieval Castles’ Digital Reconstruction," 31 Mar. 2020 Also on this day: 44 B.C.: Julius Caesar is assassinated by a group of nobles that included Brutus and Cassius. Fox News, "This Day in History: March 15," 15 Mar. 2020 This is partly because the country is a historical fusion of small states and cities that were once run by princes and nobles, all determined to prove their cultural prowess. Catherine Hickley, New York Times, "Budget Blowouts and Delays Blight Germany’s Major Arts Projects," 10 Jan. 2020 Some researchers say the events of 378 may have been a more limited case of palace intrigue, with the nobles of one powerful region elbowing their way into the politics of another. Lizzie Wade, Science | AAAS, "‘Astounding new finds’ suggest ancient empire may be hiding in plain sight," 27 Feb. 2020 An English commoner dons the armor of a dead jouster and, with the help of friends, competes against nobles in 14th-century France. Los Angeles Times, "Movies on TV this week: Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019," 22 Sep. 2019 An English commoner dons the armor of a dead jouster and, with the help of friends, competes against nobles in 14th-century France. Los Angeles Times, "Movies on TV this week: Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019," 22 Sep. 2019 Both nobles are down-to-earth and yet undeniably regal; one of the two will greet guests and share the incredible love story of Princess Anita von Hohenberg’s great-grandparents. Janice Wald Henderson, Condé Nast Traveler, "Cruise Like a Royal: 5 Itineraries Where You Can Visit Castles and Hang Out With Nobility," 17 Sep. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of noble

Adjective

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for noble

Adjective

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin nobilis well-known, noble, from noscere to come to know — more at know

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about noble

Time Traveler for noble Time Traveler

The first known use of noble was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for noble

Last Updated

6 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Noble.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/noble. Accessed 9 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for noble

noble

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of noble

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: having, showing, or coming from personal qualities that people admire (such as honesty, generosity, courage, etc.)
: of, relating to, or belonging to the highest social class : of, relating to, or belonging to the nobility
: impressive in size or appearance

noble

noun

English Language Learners Definition of noble (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person who is a member of the nobility

noble

adjective
no·​ble | \ ˈnō-bəl How to pronounce noble (audio) \
nobler; noblest

Kids Definition of noble

 (Entry 1 of 2)
1 : having or showing very fine or admirable qualities a noble deed He was a noble person of courage and honesty.
2 : of very high birth or rank a noble lady
3 : grand in appearance a noble cathedral

Other Words from noble

nobleness noun
nobly \ -​blē \ adverb

noble

noun
Kids Definition of noble (Entry 2 of 2)
: a person of high birth or rank

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on noble

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Who Knew?

Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

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!