Earl \e(a)-rl\ as a boy's name is pronounced erl. It is of Old English origin, and the meaning of Earl is "nobleman, warrior, prince". Name based on the English title, originally a nickname for Baron, Duke or King. The tile was used as an equivalent of the French "comte" meaning "count", from Old English "eorl". Also used as a surname for people who worked for the aristocratic household of an earl. Author Erle Stanley Gardner; actor Errol Flynn; basketball celebrity Earl ("the Pearl") Monroe; musician Earl Scruggs; Chief Justice of the American Supreme Court Earl Warren.