|Princess / Prince|
|Grand Duchess / Grand Duke|
|Duchess / Duke|
|Countess / Count|
|Baroness / Baron|
|Lord of the Manor / Lady of the Manor|
|Dame / Knight|
Nobility is normatively a hereditary social class ranked immediately under royalty that possesses various social privileges and a higher social status than most other classes in a society. The privileges associated with nobility may constitute substantial advantages over other social ranks in a respective society or may be largely honorary (e.g., precedence), and vary by country and era. The Medieval chivalric motto "noblesse oblige", meaning literally "nobility obligates", explains that privileges carry a lifelong obligation of duty to uphold various social responsibilities of, e.g., honorable behavior, customary service, or leadership roles or positions, that lives on by a familial or kinship bond. The life of a Noble is generally not as glamorous to those who bare it rather than those who see it.
Nobility as a Ruling Class
The Nobility in the Principality of the Northern Forests are a ruling class. Governmental responsibilities are enormous. Unlike elected officials who change every few years and with it brings mystery as to how they will rule, the Nobility brings with it stability and long-term reassurance of how things will be. Each generation is trained and raised in the same manner so the nobility remains virtually unchanged in how they tackled governmental operations for thousands of years. Membership in the nobility and the prerogatives thereof have are acknowledged or regulated by the Princess and her government. The nobility per se has nonetheless rarely constituted a closed caste; acquisition of sufficient power, wealth, military prowess, or royal favor has enabled commoners with varying frequency to ascend into the nobility.
The concept of feudalism allows nobles and commoners the ability to work, own property and achieve a semblance wealth and stability. Military commanders in the Principality of the Northern Forests are always drawn from the Nobility irrespective of the commoners qualifications.
Up to the 13th century, Armorial Bearings were bore almost exclusively by the Royalty and Nobility. As time progressed wealthy merhcants and other commoners were allowed Grants of Arms. Some countries began to allow the use of Burgher Arms and currently places like the United States allow the assumption of arms. The American College of Heraldry helps United States citizens (for a fee) design and publish Coat of Arms. However, the assumption of a Coat of Arms does not make someone Noble. In most countries, scholars agree that a Coat of Arms is an indication of Nobility, but simply assuming a Coat of Arms did not ennoble the armiger. In the Principality of the Northern Forests armorial heraldry is strictly regulated and the unlawful use of a Coat of Arms is a criminal act so people with assumed Coat of Arms should exercise caution because it can lead to your arrest and facing criminal charges and banishment from the Principality permanently.
The term derives from Latin nobilitas, the abstract noun of the adjective nobilis ("well-known, famous, notable"). In ancient Roman society, nobiles originated as an informal designation for the political governing class who had allied interests, including both patricians and plebeian families (gentes) with an ancestor who had risen to the consulship through his own merit (see novus homo, "new man"). In modern usage, "nobility" is applied to the highest social class in pre-modern societies, excepting the ruling dynasty. In the feudal system (in Europe and elsewhere), the nobility were generally those who held a fief, often land or office, under vassalage, i.e., in exchange for allegiance and various, mainly military, services to a suzerain, who might be a higher-ranking nobleman or a monarch. It rapidly came to be seen as a hereditary caste, sometimes associated with a right to bear a hereditary title and, for example in pre-revolutionary France, enjoying fiscal and other privileges.
United States citizens have been fascinated with Royalty and Nobility for the last 100 years. There are a host of Nobility living full or part-time in the United States from all over the world. There are a couple issues pertaining to Nobility living in the United States. Firstly, one important issue is that if someone decides to become a United States citizen they must renounce any Titles of Nobility they hold. So if an exiled King wants to become a U.S. citizen he must renounce his title as King. Sadly if his country ever becomes a Monarchy again he forfeits his right to rule. The loop hole here is that there is nothing illegal with an American born citizen accepting Titles of Nobility nor is such actions prohibited under state or federal law. Unfortunately; however, the Title of Nobility Clause specifically prohibits people with a title of Nobility from taking an elected office in the United States. Article I, Section 9, Clause 8 of the United States Constitution states:
"No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State."— Article I, Section 9, Clause 8, United States Constitution
Thus, if anyone with a Noble Title ever decides to be a politician in the United States then they would be forced to renounce their titles and any offices they may hold in any other foreign State currently ruling or in exile and refrain from accepting any future titles from world Monarchies unless they has the express consent of the United States Congress. Interestingly, in 1810 a Constitutional Amendment Bill modifying the Title of Nobility Clause was introduced, passed and was left to the states to ratify. Under the terms of this amendment any United States citizen who accepted, claimed, received or retained any Title of Nobility from a foreign government would be stripped of their U.S. citizenship. As Congress did not set a time limit for its ratification, the amendment is still technically pending before the states 210 years later.
- Becker, S. (1985). Nobility and privilege in late imperial Russia (p. 171). Dekalb: Northern Illinois University Press.
- Davis, J. C. (1962). The decline of the Venetian nobility as a ruling class (Vol. 80). Baltimore, Md.: Johns Hopkins Press.
- Dewald, J. (1996). The European Nobility, 1400-1800 (Vol. 9). Cambridge University Press.
- Given-Wilson, C. (2002). The English nobility in the late Middle Ages: the fourteenth-century political community. Routledge.
- Nierop, H. F. K., & van Nierop, H. F. (1993). The nobility of Holland: from knights to regents, 1500-1650. Cambridge University Press.
- Reuter, T. (Ed.). (1979). The Medieval nobility: studies on the ruling classes of France and Germany from the sixth to the twelfth century. North-Holland Publishing Company.
- Ward, J. (2013). Women of the English nobility and gentry, 1066-1500.