Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A commoner; a plebeian.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun One of the common people; a plebeian; a low-born person.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun derogatory A common person, someone of a lower class.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun one of the common people

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Short for plebeian, or perhaps back-formation from plebs.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Abbreviation of plebeian ("member of the lower class in ancient Rome"), or by back-formation from Latin plebs.

Examples

  • Yes Stephen Fry, I'll settle for 'pleb' … Shame you're not yourself, you toffee-nosed Establishment stooge.

    Guy Fawkes' blog

  • "Several cadets threatened to resign, some advocated maiming him for life, and a Democratic 'pleb' from Illinois exclaimed, 'I'd rather die than drill with the black devil.'

    The colored cadet at West Point : autobiography of Lieut. Henry Ossian Flipper, U. S. A., first graduate of color from the U. S. Military Academy,

  • "Several cadets threatened to resign, some advocated maiming him for life, and a Democratic 'pleb' from Illinois exclaimed, 'I'd rather die than drill with the black devil.'

    Henry Ossian Flipper The Colored Cadet at West Point

  • Prescriptivism in the strange fiction genres is ideally situated to act as carrier of anti-intellectualism and classism, with advocates of more commercial fiction decreeing complex works “improper” and advocates of more complex fiction decreeing commercial works “improper”, each opponent of “elitist wank” or “populist trash” ironically engendering a counter-response that abjects them as a “pleb” or a “snob”.

    Archive 2009-06-01

  • Prescriptivism in the strange fiction genres is ideally situated to act as carrier of anti-intellectualism and classism, with advocates of more commercial fiction decreeing complex works “improper” and advocates of more complex fiction decreeing commercial works “improper”, each opponent of “elitist wank” or “populist trash” ironically engendering a counter-response that abjects them as a “pleb” or a “snob”.

    There's No Prescribing Prescriptivism

  • Cameron is a posh pleb but if your assertion about him is correct and he views a country as having to abide by "household economics" then broadly speaking I could possibly agree with him,especially as in theory he governs a fertile island with an existing infrastructure.

    John Maynard Keynes: The master and the doctor | Editorial

  • I was beginning to feel like a pleb; as if I'd lost a bet with a friend with the forfeit being to traipse around the corridors of a hotel in nothing but a discoloured beach towel.

    A rainy day in Shanghai

  • There was nothing there for a poor pleb like me, so I ended up skimming over the last two hundred pages.

    Archive 2009-08-01

  • The rhetoric of prejudicial disdain is meted out, on the one hand against the “hoity-toity”, and on the other against the “hoi poloi” -- against the “snob” with complex tastes and the “pleb” with simple tastes.

    Archive 2009-06-01

  • The rhetoric of prejudicial disdain is meted out, on the one hand against the “hoity-toity”, and on the other against the “hoi poloi” -- against the “snob” with complex tastes and the “pleb” with simple tastes.

    There's No Prescribing Prescriptivism

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