Marquis \m(a)-rquis, mar-quis\ as a boy's name is pronounced mar-KEECE, MAR-kuss, mar-KEE. It is of Old French origin, and the meaning of Marquis is "nobleman; lord of the borderlands". Originally a title of nobility for aristocrats whose holdings were situated in vulnerable border areas (the Marches). It is a lower rank than Duke, but higher than Earl, Viscount, or Baron. Use as a personal name may have been influenced by names derived from the Latin Marcus. Phonetic variants indicate that parents favor mar-KEECE, probably using Marquis as a title name. Marquis (MAR-kuss) is a variant of a Scottish surname; Marquez is a Spanish form. Football player Marquez Pope; baseball player Marquis Grissom.