Marquis or Marquess?

editing_for_authors
Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.

ccarver30

Nicole Castro
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Mar 14, 2007
Messages
2,606
Reaction score
857
Location
Wherever the MMC is
Website
www.amazon.com
I have looked them both up at dictionary.com and they are synonyms; however, it seems that Marquess is more "british". My novel is set in 19th century London, England- does it matter which one I use?
 

newmod

Super Member
Registered
Joined
Feb 14, 2005
Messages
337
Reaction score
34
Location
Madrid
I believe Marquess is used for British nobles and Marquis for foreign, but not absolutely certain. Anybody have a copy of Burke´s peerage?
 

Bo Sullivan

Banned
Joined
Sep 9, 2006
Messages
1,201
Reaction score
187
Location
South Wales
Website
www.freewebs.com
I would use marquis or marquess both are correct according to Fowlers Concise English Dictionary - nouns. Noble ranking between duke and earl or in foreign countries count.

I am in UK and I prefer marquis.

Barbara
 

ccarver30

Nicole Castro
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Mar 14, 2007
Messages
2,606
Reaction score
857
Location
Wherever the MMC is
Website
www.amazon.com
Looks like this might answer my question. Thanks for your help!

A Marquess (British English spelling) or Marquis (North American English and the original French spelling) 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 and Japan. In the British peerage it ranks below a Duke and above an Earl, on the continent usually equivalent where a cognate title exists. A woman with the rank of Marquess, or the wife of a Marquess, is a Marchioness, (IPA pronunciation: [ˌmɑ(r)ʃə'nɛs]) or Marquise (North American English and the original French spelling).


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marquess
 

Bo Sullivan

Banned
Joined
Sep 9, 2006
Messages
1,201
Reaction score
187
Location
South Wales
Website
www.freewebs.com
I have looked them both up at dictionary.com and they are synonyms; however, it seems that Marquess is more "british". My novel is set in 19th century London, England- does it matter which one I use?

I am just curious to know which of the two your chose for your book? I used to go to a pub called the Marquis of Granby and that was in a little village in England in the late 1960s. May be they couldn't fit the longer spelling on to the sign outside the pub!

Barbara
 

Anne Lyle

Fantastic historian
Super Member
Registered
Joined
May 23, 2007
Messages
3,469
Reaction score
395
Location
Cambridge, UK. Or 1590s London. Some days it's har
Website
www.annelyle.com
I am just curious to know which of the two your chose for your book? I used to go to a pub called the Marquis of Granby and that was in a little village in England in the late 1960s. May be they couldn't fit the longer spelling on to the sign outside the pub!

Barbara

The official title of the peer is "Marquess of Granby", but the form with 'i' seems to be standard on the many pub signs bearing the name. However they're named after an 18th-century marquess (he was a general and reputedly sponsored his disabled veterans so they could set themselves up as publicans), so maybe that's how it was spelt then and it just stuck.
 

ccarver30

Nicole Castro
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Mar 14, 2007
Messages
2,606
Reaction score
857
Location
Wherever the MMC is
Website
www.amazon.com
I am just curious to know which of the two your chose for your book? I used to go to a pub called the Marquis of Granby and that was in a little village in England in the late 1960s. May be they couldn't fit the longer spelling on to the sign outside the pub!

Barbara

I chose marquess since my character is English.

The sign could be referencing a non-English marquess..? :)
 
Joined
Aug 7, 2005
Messages
47,985
Reaction score
13,245
Marquis seems French to me and would be pronounced Markee, as in the Marquis de Sade.

Marquess looks more British and would be pronounced Markwiss.
 

Woof

Outward Hound
Requiescat In Pace
Registered
Joined
May 4, 2007
Messages
19,947
Reaction score
1,782
Location
Dogpatch
Yes, Marquess is the correct choice for a British person of that title, whereas Marquis is French. The most famous example of a British Marquess would be the 8th Marquess of Queensberry who was responsible for establishing a code of rules for the sport of boxing, and also the father of Lord Alfred Douglas and instigator of the infamous Oscar Wilde trials of 1895.
 

job

In the end, it's just you and the manuscript
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Jun 27, 2005
Messages
3,459
Reaction score
653
Website
www.joannabourne.com
My understanding is that 'marquess' has been more common in England, while 'marquis' was more common in Scotland.

Talking your period of interest ...

Up until 1802, and sometimes later on, Debrett used 'marquis' for that rank. By midcentury -- say before 1840 -- the changeover had been made to marquess.

So ISTM you can use 'marquis' in England in early century with no problem. In Scotland clean through.
And you can use 'marquess' in England anytime after the first decade of so of C19.
 

Happy Thanksgiving

Autumn image for Thanksgiving