n. pl. gen·tries
1. People of gentle birth, good breeding, or high social position.
a. An upper or ruling class.
b. The class of English landowners ranking just below the nobility.
3. People of a particular class or group: another commuter from the suburban gentry.
[Middle English gentri, nobility of birth, from Old French genterie, variant of genterise, gentilise, from gentil, noble; see GENTLE.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.