Definition of viscount in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈvīˌkount/


A British nobleman ranking above a baron and below an earl.
Example sentences
  • The wives of a king, prince, duke, marquess, earl, viscount and baron are queen, princess, duchess, marchioness, countess, viscountess and baroness respectively.
  • The territorial power of the English magnates (the barons, viscounts, earls, marquesses, and dukes in ascending order of status) was crucial to the peace of the realm and the success of royal government.
  • ‘In my time, I've known dukes, marquesses, earls, viscounts and other members of Britain's House of Lords and none of them had the contempt for the masses one routinely hears from America's coastal elites.’



Pronunciation: /ˈvīˌkoun(t)sē/
Example sentences
  • The eldest son normally takes as his courtesy title the family viscountcy.
  • The captain's vicar father had unexpectedly inherited a viscountcy, and it made Amanda sad that the Ramsfords still seemed on the fringe of the ton.
  • Mr Benn, 75, who renounced in 1963 the viscountcy he inherited from his father, had a majority of 5,775 at the 1997 election.


Late Middle English: from Old French visconte, from medieval Latin vicecomes, vicecomit- (see vice-, count2).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: vis·count

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.