noblesse oblige love

noblesse oblige

Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Benevolent, honorable behavior considered to be the responsibility of persons of high birth or rank.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The honourable obligation that is the responsibility of those of high rank; in American English this often includes the expectation of benevolent actions such as helping those less fortunate.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the obligation of those of high rank to be honorable and generous (often used ironically)

Etymologies

French, nobility is an obligation : noblesse, nobility + oblige, third person sing. present tense of obliger, to obligate.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French, noblesse ("nobility") oblige ("obliges") (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • He found, with rare and mythical exceptions, that there was no noblesse oblige among the business and financial supermen.

    Chapter V

  • Something always held her back -- some vague blend of noble and ignoble motives, of pride and masochism and noblesse oblige and the Spartan Boy and Kate Barlass and a quite unreasonable feeling of hostility towards the white-veiled, white-coated young woman who hovered all the time behind Mr. Hinchley waiting for him to say "Double-ended spatula" or "Pink wax."

    Mrs. Miniver

  • Power: including rank over Dudley Smith and the noblesse oblige to make an afternoon of shitwork with Buzz Meeks tolerable.

    The Big Nowhere

  • (I was already feeling the superiority of my Nosferatitude, so it only seemed appropriate that I go all noblesse oblige on his ass.)

    You Suck

Comments

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  • Watch Mary Poppins, it pops up in the father's opening song.

    April 2, 2007