What does gentry mean?

Definitions for gentry
ˈdʒɛn trigen·t·ry

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word gentry.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. gentry, aristocracynoun

    the most powerful members of a society


  1. gentrynoun

    Birth; condition; rank by birth.

  2. gentrynoun

    Courtesy; civility; complaisance.

  3. gentrynoun

    People of education and good breeding.

  4. gentrynoun

    In a restricted sense, those people between the nobility and the yeomanry.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Gentrynoun

    Etymology: gentlery, gentry, from gentle.

    You are certainly a gentleman,
    Clerk-like experienc’d, which no less adorns
    Our gentry than our parents’ noble name,
    In whose success we are gentle. William Shakespeare, Winter’s Tale.

    They slaughtered many of the gentry, for whom no sex or age could be accepted for excuse. Philip Sidney.

    Let states, that aim at greatness, take heed how their nobility and gentry multiply too fast. Francis Bacon, Ornam. Ration.

    How chearfully the hawkers cry
    A satire, and the gentry buy. Jonathan Swift.

    The many-colour’d gentry there above,
    By turns are rul’d by tumult and by love. Matthew Prior.

    Shew us so much gentry and good-will,
    As to extend your time with us a-while. William Shakespeare, Hamlet.


  1. gentry

    Gentry refers to people of high social class or high social status, particularly those who are wealthy, well-bred, and have a good social standing. They often own land and come from noble or aristocratic families. The term is often used in a historical context, especially in the analysis of pre-modern societies.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Gentryadjective

    birth; condition; rank by birth

  2. Gentryadjective

    people of education and good breeding; in England, in a restricted sense, those between the nobility and the yeomanry

  3. Gentryadjective

    courtesy; civility; complaisance

  4. Etymology: [OE. genterie, gentrie, noble birth, nobility, cf. gentrise, and OF. gentelise, genterise, E. gentilesse, also OE. genteleri high-mindedness. See Gent, a., Gentle, a.]


  1. Gentry

    Gentry denotes "well-born and well-bred people" of high social class, especially in the past. Gentry, in its widest connotation, refers to people of good social position connected to landed estates, upper levels of the clergy, and "gentle" families of long descent who never obtained the official right to bear a coat of arms. In England, the term often refers to the social class of the landed aristocracy or to the minor aristocracy whose income derives from their large landholdings. The idea of gentry in the continental sense of "noblesse" is extinct in common parlance in England, despite the efforts of enthusiasts to revive it. Though the untitled nobility in England are normally termed gentry, the older sense of "nobility" is that of a quality identical to gentry. The fundamental social division in most parts of Europe in the Middle Ages was between the "nobiles", i.e. the tenants in chivalry, and the "ignobiles", i.e. the villeins, citizens and burgesses. The division into nobles and ignobles in smaller regions of Europe in the Middle Ages was less exact due to a more rudimentary feudal order. After the Reformation, intermingling between the noble class and the often hereditary clerical upper class became a distinctive feature in several Nordic countries.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Gentry

    jen′tri, n. the class of people below the rank of nobility: (coll.) people of a particular, esp. an inferior, stamp: (Shak.) noble birth. [Apparently an altered form of gentrice, from O. Fr. genterise, gentelise, formed from adj. gentil, gentle.]

Surnames Frequency by Census Records


    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Gentry is ranked #806 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Gentry surname appeared 43,027 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 15 would have the surname Gentry.

    82% or 35,321 total occurrences were White.
    12.1% or 5,228 total occurrences were Black.
    2.5% or 1,084 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.
    2% or 899 total occurrences were of two or more races.
    0.7% or 314 total occurrences were American Indian or Alaskan Native.
    0.4% or 181 total occurrences were Asian.

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  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of gentry in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of gentry in Pythagorean Numerology is: 8

Examples of gentry in a Sentence

  1. Alvin Gentry:

    Youve got to get yourself in basketball shape, conditioning-wise, and thats going to be a process. Hes eager to be out there and all of his teammates are eager for him to be out there, but its a step by step process that weve got to take so that its done the right way, Gentry addded. Theres no date, per se, but were hoping that its soon. After the Pelicans host the Bulls, they hit the road for games at New York on Friday, Boston on Saturday and Detroit on Monday before returning home to play Utah on Jan. 16. If the Pelicans want Williamson to make his debut in New Orleans, that game could be a candidate, or the following game against the visiting Los Angeles Clippers on Jan. 18. We want to make sure that everything is in place and well take our time.

  2. Sir Thomas Browne:

    There is a rabble among the gentry as well as the commonalty; a sort of plebeian heads whose fancy moves with the same wheel as these men?in the same level with mechanics, though their fortunes do sometimes gild their infirmities and their purses compound for their follies.

  3. Gerry McGovern:

    In Britain, it was always the vehicle of the landed gentry, the establishment, the farmers, the people who lived out in the country, that went shooting, all this sort of thing, it still has that. It still has a core following, but it's much more than that now. It's entrepreneurs, it's people that are successful, it's people that are creatively minded, or design literate.

  4. Herman Melville:

    There is the grand truth about Nathaniel Hawthorne. He says NO! in thunder; but the Devil himself cannot make him say yes. For all men who say yes, lie; and all men who say no,why, they are in the happy condition of judicious, unincumbered travellers in Europe; they cross the frontiers into Eternity with nothing but a carpet-bag,that is to say, the Ego. Whereas those yes-gentry, they travel with heaps of baggage, and, damn them! they will never get through the Custom House.

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Translations for gentry

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"gentry." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 30 May 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/gentry>.

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    relating to or concerned with a city or densely populated area
    A blistering
    B urban
    C occasional
    D alternate

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