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

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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
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Or that in a country as diverse as today’s America, what one person sees as noble, another sees as hollow or oppressive. John King, SFChronicle.com, "Trump says classical buildings ‘encourage civic virtue,’ but his mob ransacked the classical U.S. Capitol with glee," 7 Jan. 2021 Trelawney Castle, situated on a bluff overlooking the ocean, has belonged to the same noble family for 800 years. Moira Hodgson, WSJ, "‘House of Trelawney’ Review: The Weight of the Estate," 1 Jan. 2021 Heroine Daphne Bridgerton is the eldest in a noble family, and of marrying age. Matthew Gilbert, BostonGlobe.com, "Having a ball with the contemporary sensibility of ‘Bridgerton’," 30 Dec. 2020 But the truth is much more complicated and decidedly less noble. San Diego Union-Tribune, "The U.S. asylum system is broken. How could it be reimagined?," 27 Dec. 2020 Edmond Giscard traced his lineage to a noble family that thrived before the French Revolution. New York Times, "Valéry Giscard d’Estaing," 2 Dec. 2020 People did things, bad things; even across the span of centuries, they’re being held to account, and there’s something noble about that. Bill Mckibben, The New Yorker, "When “Creatives” Turn Destructive: Image-Makers and the Climate Crisis," 21 Nov. 2020 Once the trees are delivered — noble, Douglas, grand and Nordmann firs — Ernesto trims the trunks and puts them on stands while Maria works with customers and minds the counter. Jeanette Marantos, Los Angeles Times, "She built South Los Angeles’ only enduring nursery 33 years ago on a dusty corner lot," 23 Dec. 2020 Efforts to increase the life cycle of clothing through resale—and ultimately mitigate its environmental impact—is noble, Jones said, but reaching sustainability goals will take more than just thrifting. Jacqueline Davalos, Bloomberg.com, "Holiday Shoppers With Money to Burn Covet Secondhand Luxury," 22 Dec. 2020 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.

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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

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Time Traveler for noble

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for noble

Last Updated

17 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Noble.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/noble. Accessed 27 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for noble

noble

adjective
How to pronounce noble (audio)

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

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Comments on noble

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