One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The hereditary title of some princes of the Holy Roman Empire.
- ‘Long after Charlemagne, and even long after the Middle Ages, there were lords in Germany called margraves, still reflecting the administrative inheritance from the early Middle Ages.’
- ‘It is true that mormaers are found inland, but an analogy may be made with Carolingian border officials ‘margrave’ and ‘marquis’ which became titles for members of the nobility far away from a frontier.’
- ‘In order for his margraves, especially, to rule the conquered peoples, Charlemagne had their customs set down in writing.’
Mid 16th century, from Middle Dutch markgrave ‘count of a border territory’, from marke ‘boundary’ + grave ‘count’.
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