\ \ [17] A Roman citizen of the lowest class was termed a prōlētārius. The only service he was capable of performing for the state was that of producing children, to maintain its population level, and it was this function that gave the prōlētārius his name. For it was derived from prōlēsoffspring’, a word based on the same source (*ol- ‘nourish’) as produced English adolescent, alimony, etc. The abbreviation prole dates back to the late 19th century (George Bernard Shaw is the first writer on record as using it), but it was George Orwell in the 1930s who firmly established the term.
\ \ The immediate source of proletariat [19] is French prolétariat (in the 19th century it was often anglicized to proletariate).
\ \ English is also indebted to Latin prōlēs for prolific [17], which comes from the medieval Latin derivative prōlificusproducing offspring’.

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.

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  • Proletarian — Prol e*ta ri*an, a. [L. proletarius. See Proletary.] Of or pertaining to the proletaries; belonging to the commonalty; hence, mean; vile; vulgar. Every citizen, if he were not a proletarian animal kept at the public cost. De Quincey. n. A… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • proletarian — index ignoble Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • proletarian — 1650s (n.), 1660s (adj.), from L. proletarius citizen of the lowest class, in ancient Rome, propertyless people, exempted from taxes and military service, who served the state only by having children; from proles offspring, progeny (see PROLIFIC… …   Etymology dictionary

  • proletarian — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ relating to the proletariat. ► NOUN ▪ a member of the proletariat. ORIGIN Latin proletarius (from proles offspring ), denoting a person without wealth, who served the state only by producing offspring …   English terms dictionary

  • proletarian — [prō΄lə ter′ē ən] adj. [< L proletarius, citizen of the lowest class (see PROLETARY) + AN] of the proletariat n. a member of the proletariat; worker …   English World dictionary

  • proletarian — [[t]pro͟ʊlɪte͟əriən[/t]] proletarians 1) ADJ Proletarian means relating to the proletariat. ...a proletarian revolution. 2) N COUNT A proletarian is a member of the proletariat …   English dictionary

  • proletarian —    Communist    The proletariat, from the Latin proletarius, the lowest class in the Servian arrangement (Wm Smith, 1933) first described those in feudal service and then anyone who worked for a wage, among whom middle class revolutionaries… …   How not to say what you mean: A dictionary of euphemisms

  • proletarian — I UK [ˌprəʊləˈteərɪən] / US [ˌproʊləˈterɪən] adjective working class II UK [ˌprəʊləˈteərɪən] / US [ˌproʊləˈterɪən] noun [countable] Word forms proletarian : singular proletarian plural proletarians a working class person …   English dictionary

  • proletarian — noun Etymology: Latin proletarius, from proles progeny, from pro forth + oles (akin to alere to nourish) more at old Date: 1658 a member of the proletariat • proletarian adjective …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • proletarian — adj. Proletarian is used with these nouns: ↑revolution …   Collocations dictionary

  • proletarian — pro|le|tar|i|an1 [ ,proulə teriən ] adjective working class proletarian pro|le|tar|i|an 2 [ ,proulə teriən ] noun count a working class person …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

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