plebe

noun

1
: a freshman at a military or naval academy
He also struggled to march in step and stumbled through … a morning ritual in which plebes are forced to stand at full attention and recite an endless stream of information … Jonathan Mahler
2
a
: one of the common people : plebeian
Once a proud and high-minded group, the new class could look up at the rich with a certain contempt and down at the plebes with compassion … Barbara Ehrenreich
b
: an ordinary person who lacks the knowledge of an insider
These guys may look like plebes, but they're veteran hackers. Davin Coburn
The movie has its origins in Dave Stevens' 1982 graphic novel (comic book to us plebes), a knowing, exquisitely drawn valentine to aviation aces and 1930s Los Angeles. Ty Burr

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Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Navy is unbeaten in three games at West Point and won the previous encounter 13-0 in 1943, when the great Glenn Davis was a plebe at West Point. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 12 Dec. 2020 Navy is unbeaten in three games at West Point and won the previous encounter 13-0 in 1943, when the great Glenn Davis was a plebe at West Point. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 12 Dec. 2020 Navy is unbeaten in three games at West Point and won the previous encounter 13-0 in 1943, when the great Glenn Davis was a plebe at West Point. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 12 Dec. 2020 Navy is unbeaten in three games at West Point and won the previous encounter 13-0 in 1943, when the great Glenn Davis was a plebe at West Point. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 12 Dec. 2020 Navy is unbeaten in three games at West Point and won the previous encounter 13-0 in 1943, when the great Glenn Davis was a plebe at West Point. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 12 Dec. 2020 Navy is unbeaten in three games at West Point and won the previous encounter 13-0 in 1943, when the great Glenn Davis was a plebe at West Point. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 12 Dec. 2020 Navy is unbeaten in three games at West Point and won the previous encounter 13-0 in 1943, when the great Glenn Davis was a plebe at West Point. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 12 Dec. 2020 Navy is unbeaten in three games at West Point and won the previous encounter 13-0 in 1943, when the great Glenn Davis was a plebe at West Point. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 12 Dec. 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'plebe.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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Word History

Etymology

obsolete plebe common people, from French plèbe, from Latin plebs

First Known Use

1833, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of plebe was in 1833

Dictionary Entries Near plebe

Cite this Entry

“Plebe.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/plebe. Accessed 3 Oct. 2022.

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