Duchess

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Duchess Meaning and Definition in Dictionary

Duchess Meaning and Definition in Wikipedia


Someone who is a Duke is part of the nobility. In monarchies like the U.K. the title has legal status, and is inherited in the male line.

The first English dukes were created by Edward III in 1337, when he gave his eldest son, Edward, the Black Prince, the title of Duke of Cornwall.

Dukes are formally referred to as 'The Duke of Westminster' (for example), and addressed as "Your Grace". On State occasions, dukes rank below Royal Dukes, and above Counts. This is called the order of precedence, because in procession to the opening Parliament, or on other state occasions, they walk in order of their rank.

The wife of a duke is a Duchess. This is an honorary title, given for life to the lawfully wedded wife of a Duke. If she divorces and remarries a commoner (person with no title) their children bear no title. The children of a duke, on the other hand, do bear honorary titles (so long as they are born in lawful wedlock). The eldest son may bear what is called a junior title which an ancestor was given before the dukedom was created. Other children would be called 'Lady' Jane (or other Christian name) and 'Lord' James (or other Christian name). Children use the family surname, not the Dukedom.

[See more about Duchess at Dictionary 3.0 Encyclopedia]

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