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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Highness \High"ness\, n. [AS. he['a]hnes.]

  1. The state of being high; elevation; loftiness.

  2. A title of honor given to kings, princes, or other persons of rank; as, His Royal Highness.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

Old English heanes; see high (adj.) + -ness. Meaning "royalty, excellence, nobility" is early 13c.; Your Highness as a form of address to English royalty is attested from c.1400.


n. the state of being high


Highness is a formal style used to address (in second person) or refer to (in third person) certain members of a reigning or formerly reigning dynasty. It is typically used with a possessive adjective: "His Highness", "Their Highnesses", etc. Although often combined with other adjectives of honour indicating rank, such as "Imperial", "Royal" or "Serene", it may be used alone.

Highness is, both literally and historically, the quality of being lofty or above, used as a term to evoke dignity or honour, and to acknowledge the exalted or official high rank of the person so described.

Highness (song)

"Highness" is a song by British indie rock band Envy & Other Sins from their debut studio album We Leave at Dawn. It was released on 3 March 2008 and peaked at number 65 on the UK Singles Chart.

Usage examples of "highness".

He suddenly remembered his station and more formally said, Besides, your Highness, we have a minor matter to finish discussing regarding the new border here in the West.

On Monday, April 22, at the Huis ten Bosch Palace at The Hague, Adams was received by His Most Serene Highness the Prince of Orange, William V, and his wife Princess Wilhelmina in a ceremony of formal recognition.

At first I expressed some perplexity at the questions having emanated from her royal highness, and I told her afterwards that I understood cabalism, but that I could not interpret the meaning of the answers obtained through it, and that her highness must ask new questions likely to render the answers easier to be understood.

A CREMATION Last Monday an Indian prince died at Etretat, Bapu Sahib Khanderao Ghatay, a relation of His Highness, the Maharajah Gaikwar, prince of Baroda, in the province of Guzerat, Presidency of Bombay.

It appeared from the account of Baroni, that his highness had departed at dawn, on his dromedary, and without an attendant.

He begs Your Highness to go with him personally with all your forces, to help carry out the conquest of the Empire of Greece.

Of these, twenty-six thousand were to be Hanoverians, and, in consequence of engagements entered into for that purpose, twelve thousand Hessians, six thousand Brunswickers, two thousand Saxe-Gothans, and a thousand Lunenburghers, to be joined by a considerable body of Prussians, the whole commanded by his royal highness the duke of Cumberland.

At last her Highness made her appearance, richly dressed in the Burman fashion, with a long silver pipe in her mouth, smoking.

I took pains to let the chuprassi see that my hands did not touch the powder, which, after due weighing, I bestowed in a paper carefully sealed, instructing him to deliver it to no one but his highness the maharajah.

Highness to credit what he says to you, especially when he expresses the sentiment of esteem and special regard I have long entertained for your person.

The Under-Secretary of State for War:-- Sir,--With reference to the several reports which have been received from the General Officer Commanding in Canada relative to the Fenian movement in that Province, and to the measures taken by the colonists for repelling any Fenian attack, I am directed by the Field Marshal Commanding-in-Chief to request that you will acquaint the Secretary of State for War that His Royal Highness, having observed the alacrity, loyalty and zeal shown by the volunteers and militia forces of Canada in having come forward for the defence of the colony on the late trying occasion, in support of the troops, is very desirous of expressing to the force his full appreciation of their gallant and energetic behavior, and the very great gratification and satisfaction he has thereby experienced.

In fact, highness, it was Fraxinus who asked me to come here tonight, to ask a small favour of you.

His Granddam Zazar has given orders that Her Highness accompany him to the encampment of the Four Armies, to what purpose the Wysen-wyf will not say.

I declared that I was authorized by your royal highness to enter with him this holiest of holies.

Sir Ramsey came charging into my yard as though the Hunnish cavalry were after him to deliver those letters from His Highness.