hoi polloi

hoi polloi

hoi polloi [hoi puh-loi] ExamplesWord Origin See more synonyms for hoi polloi on Thesaurus.com plural noun

  1. the common people; the masses (often preceded by the).

Origin of hoi polloi 1815–25; Greek: the many Related Words for hoi polloi infrastructure, masses, multitude, proletariat, rabble, riffraff, commonality, vulgus Examples from the Web for hoi polloi Historical Examples of hoi polloi

  • No use letting the “hoi-polloi” get on to it that I was a greenhorn.

    An American Hobo in Europe

    Ben Goodkind

  • This was to be a plush project for big spenders, with Vegas and Reno reserved for the hoi-polloi.

    Mars Confidential

    Jack Lait

  • As was well known, when Harris Collins performed he performed only for the élite, for the hoi-polloi of the trained-animal world.

    Michael, Brother of Jerry

    Jack London

  • British Dictionary definitions for hoi polloi hoi polloi pl n

    1. often derogatory the masses; common people

    Word Origin for hoi polloi Greek, literally: the many Word Origin and History for hoi polloi

    1837, from Greek hoi polloi (plural) “the people,” literally “the many” (plural of polys; see poly-). Used in Greek by Dryden (1668) and Byron (1822), in both cases preceded by the, even though Greek hoi means “the,” a mistake repeated often by subsequent writers, who at least have the excuse of ignorance of Greek.

    hoi polloi in Culture hoi polloi [(hoy puh-loy)]

    The masses, the ordinary folk; the phrase is often used in a derogatory way to refer to a popular preference or incorrect opinion: “The hoi polloi may think that Fitzgerald is a great director, but those who know about film realize that his work is commercial and derivative.” From Greek, meaning “the many.”

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