Definition of ennoble in English:



  • 1Give (someone) a noble rank or title.

    ‘they receive life baronies on appointment unless they are already ennobled’
    • ‘Only after two years' delay was her favourite admitted to the Privy Council, and he was not ennobled as Earl of Leicester until 1564.’
    • ‘He was ennobled in 1774 and put in charge of irregular forces.’
    • ‘He was ennobled by the Emperor of Austria, allowing him to use the honorific ‘Ritter von’ before his surname.’
    • ‘For Black, the high point of his life's work came in 2001 when he was ennobled after renouncing his Canadian citizenship.’
    • ‘Meanwhile - long before any of his music appeared in print - he was ennobled and, in 1702, made Chevalier de l' Ordre de Latran.’
    • ‘When he was ennobled in 1964, someone remarked he should take the title Lord Corridor of Power.’
    • ‘The family was ennobled and, in 1546 attained a peak of prosperity.’
    • ‘It has been estimated that in the period 1774 to 1789, a total of 2,477 men were ennobled, and the numbers, if anything, were rising slightly directly before the Revolution.’
    • ‘Installed at Versailles in 1745, she was ennobled as Marquise de Pompadour, and for 20 years swayed state policy, appointing her own favourites.’
    • ‘Mountbatten's title was therefore a courtesy one until he was ennobled in 1946 as Viscount Mountbatten of Burma.’
    • ‘Piranesi was very much of the artisan class, although he was ennobled by the Pope in 1767.’
    • ‘Princess Carissa would marry him at a private assembly afterwards, as soon as the new King publicly ennobled him.’
    elevate to the nobility, elevate to the peerage, raise to the nobility, raise to the peerage, create someone a noble, make someone a noble
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  • 2Lend greater dignity or nobility of character to.

    ‘the theatre is a moral instrument to ennoble the mind’
    • ‘Dedicated in 1921 as a monument to World War I's common soldier, the Tomb ennobles the common people of a democratic society.’
    • ‘But given a chance to become a habit, the exhilarating experience of freedom enriches and ennobles people.’
    • ‘Most religions and some of the more grouchy philosophers teach that suffering ennobles us - it makes us better people.’
    • ‘To walk on another world, or even to make the attempt, would ennoble every member of the human race.’
    • ‘I can also urge you to live now in the knowledge that your son's passing ennobles our nation, just as I trust it will now ennoble you.’
    • ‘We live by telling our own story, and that story can either ennoble us or demean us.’
    • ‘In its subject matter as well as its method, physics ennobles the mind by directing it to the permanent order of the world.’
    • ‘But cultured Germans did believe that art ennobled a people, and I would like to believe it too.’
    • ‘And what they went through and what they suffered kind of ennobles us all.’
    • ‘Also, speaking from personal experience, following the teachings and example of Jesus Christ has had an ennobling effect on my character.’
    • ‘It still gratifies us today to read George Orwell: we feel ennobled by him.’
    • ‘For some this preventive action has an equivalent moral authority to the great campaigns for civic reform which ennobled the twentieth century throughout the world.’
    • ‘We know that neither success nor suffering ennobles people.’
    dignify, honour, bestow honour on, exalt, elevate, raise, enhance, add distinction to, add dignity to, distinguish, add lustre to
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Late 15th century (formerly also as innoble): from French ennoblir, from en- (expressing a change of state) + noble noble.