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Count & Countess

Baronet & Baronetess

A marquess (pronounced /ˈmɑrkwɨs/) or marquis (pronounced /mɑrˈkiː/) (from French "marquis") is a nobleman of hereditary rank in various European monarchies and some of their colonies. The term is also used to render equivalent oriental styles as in imperial China, Japan, and Vietnam (Annam). In the British peerage it ranks below a duke and above an earl (see "Marquesses in the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth"). The word "marquess" is unusual in English, ending in "-ess" but referring to a male and not a female. In Europe it is usually equivalent where a cognate title exists. A woman with the rank of a marquess, or the wife of a marquess, is a marchioness (in British usage) (pronounced /ˌmɑrʃəˈnɛs/), or a marquise (in Europe, pronounced /mɑrˈkiːz/).

Territory ruled by a Marquess is usually called a March.


Marquesal titles in other European languages

In Italy the equivalent modern rank (as opposed to margravio) is that of marchese, the wife of whom is a marchesa, a good example of how several languages adopted a new word derived from marquis for the modern style, thus distinguishing it from the old "military" margraves. Even where neither title was ever used domestically, such duplication to describe foreign titles can exist.

Germanic languages

  • Danish: Markis, Markgreve / Markise, Markgrevinde
  • Dutch: Markgraaf, Markies / Markgravin, Markiezin
  • Faroese: Markgreivi / Markgreivakona
  • German: Markgraf, Marquis / Markgräfin, Marquise
  • Icelandic: Markgreifi / Markgreifynja
  • Norwegian: Markis / Markise
  • Scots: Marquis / Marchioness
  • Swedish: Markis, Markgreve / Markisinna, Markgrevinna

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