pro·​le·​tar·​i·​an | \ ˌprō-lə-ˈter-ē-ən How to pronounce proletarian (audio) \

Definition of proletarian

: a member of the proletariat

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Other Words from proletarian

proletarian adjective

Examples of proletarian in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web As a proudly class-conscious proletarian, Martin is naturally supportive of worker strikes. J. Hoberman, The New York Review of Books, 22 Oct. 2020 Yet modern liberalism fits the modern world of high human capital better than the old rightish model of dim-witted peasants properly led by the aristocracy or the old leftish model of gormless proletarians properly led by The Party. The Economist, 8 Jan. 2020 Owing to the extensive use of machinery and to division of labour, the work of the proletarians has lost all individual character, and, consequently, all charm for the workman. Tristram Hunt, WSJ, 25 Jan. 2019 The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. Erik Kirschbaum,, 3 May 2018 Unlike the proletarians whom Karl Marx exhorted to shed their chains, most people have rather a lot to lose. Yascha Mounk, Slate Magazine, 16 Mar. 2017 What if a roving band of mutant proletarians suddenly shows up at the front door? John Carl Baker, New Republic, 14 July 2017 See More

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

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First Known Use of proletarian

circa 1657, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for proletarian

Latin proletarius, from proles progeny, from pro- forth + -oles (akin to alere to nourish) — more at old

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Time Traveler for proletarian

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The first known use of proletarian was circa 1657

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Dictionary Entries Near proletarian



proletarian dictatorship

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Cite this Entry

“Proletarian.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 May. 2022.

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