stately (adj.) Look up stately at
"noble, splendid," late 14c., from -ly (1) + state (n.1) in a sense of "costly and imposing display" (such as benefits a person of rank and wealth), attested from early 14c. This sense also is preserved in the phrase to lie in state "to be ceremoniously exposed to view before interment" (1705). Hence also stateroom. Related: Stateliness.