from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- Of high standing or honor.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. phrases which have survived the old custom, in the houses of people of rank, of placing a large saltcellar near the middle of a long table, the places above which were assigned to the guests of distinction, and those below to dependents, inferiors, and poor relations. See Saltfoot.
In medieval times, salt (a valuable seasoning) was placed in the middle of a dining table and the lord and his family were seated "above the salt" and other guests or servants below. (Wiktionary)