- (archaic) a squire; a youth who in the hopes of becoming a knight attended upon a knight
- a lawyer
- (obsolete) a shield-bearer, but also applied to other attendants.
verb (esquir, ing)
- 1801: w:Joseph Strutt, Joseph Strutt, The Sports and Pastimes of the People of England - The office of the consisted of several departments; the for the body, the of the chamber, the of the stable, and the carving ; the latter stood in the hall at dinner, carved the different dishes, and distributed them to the guests.
- a male member of the gentry ranking below a knight
- an honorific sometimes placed after a man's name
- (RQ:Shakespeare Henry 4-2), III-ii - I am Robert Shallow, sir; a poor of the county, and one of the king's justices of the peace.
- 1875 w:Herbert Broom, Herbert Broom and w:Edward Hadley, Edward Hadley, notes by w:William Wait, William Wait, Commentaries on the laws of England, I-317 - Esquires and gentlemen are confounded together by Sir w:Edward Coke, Edward Coke, who observes that every is a gentleman, and a gentleman is defined to be one qui arma gerit, who bears coat-armour, the grant of which was thought to add gentility to a man's family. It is indeed a matter somewhat unsettled what constitutes the distinction, or who is a real ; for no estate, however large, per se confers this rank upon its owner.
- A gentleman who attends or escorts a lady in public.
- (transitive) (obsolete) To attend, wait on, escort.
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