Of the words gentilis, gentilhomme, gentleman,
two etymologies are produced:
1. From the Barbarians of the fifth century, the soldiers, and at length the conquerors of the Roman empire, who were vain of their foreign nobility; and
2. From the sense of the civilians, who consider gentilis as synonymous with ingenuus.
Selden inclines to the first but the latter is more pure, as well as probable.