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nōbĭlis , e (old collat. form gnōbĭlis : nobilem antiqui pro noto ponebant, et quidem per g litteram, ut Plautus in Pseudolo: peregrina facies videtur hominis atque ignobilis, et: oculis meis obviam ignobilis obicitur. Attius in Diomede: ergo me Argos referam, nam hic sum gnobilis. Livius in Virgo: ornamento incedunt gnobili ignobiles, Paul. ex Fest. p. 174 Müll.), adj. for gnobilis, from gnosco; Gr. γιγνώσκω; v. nosco,
I.that can be known or is known, knowable, known.
II. In partic.
B. High-born, of noble birth, noble, i. e. sprung from a family (either patrician or plebeian) many members of which had filled curule offices, and consequently possessing the jus imaginum (opp. homo novus or ignobilis; cf.: “generosus, amplus): non facit nobilem atrium plenum fumosis imaginibus,Sen. Ep. 44, 5: “quanta sit in invidiā apud quosdam nobilis homines novorum hominum virtus et industria,Cic. Verr. 2, 5, 71, § 181: “Clodia mulier non solum nobilis sed etiam nota,id. Cael. 13, 31: “nobili genere nati,Cic. Verr. 2, 5, 70, § 180: “homines apud nos noti, inter suos nobiles,id. Fl. 22, 52; Liv. 22, 58.—Hence, subst.: nōbĭlis , is, m., a nobleman: “nobiles nostri,Plin. Ep. 5, 17, 5; Vulg. Isa. 5, 13; id. Psa. 149, 8: Nobilissimus, most noble, under the later emperors, a title of the Cæsars and of the members of the imperial family, Cod. Th. 10, 25, 1; Dig. 40, 11, 3.—
C. Of a noble kind, noble, excellent, superior: “tres nobilissimi fundi,Cic. Rosc. Am. 35, 99: “nobiliumque greges custos servabat equarum,Ov. M. 2, 690: “nobilis hic (equus), quocumque venit de gramine,Juv. 8, 60.—Hence, adv.: nōbĭlĭter , famously, excellently, splendidly, nobly (mostly post-Aug.; “not in Cic. or Cæs.),Vitr. 7 praef.: “nobiliter caelare argentum,Plin. 34, 8, 19, § 91.—Comp.: “nobilius philosophari,Sid. Ep. 9, 9.—Sup.: “ab exercitu nobilissime tumulatus,Liv. Epit. 54.
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