[ pop-yuh-luh s ]
/ ˈpɒp yə ləs /


the common people of a community, nation, etc., as distinguished from the higher classes.
all the inhabitants of a place; population.

Nearby words

  1. pops,
  2. popsicle,
  3. popster,
  4. popstrel,
  5. popsy,
  6. popular,
  7. popular culture,
  8. popular etymology,
  9. popular front,
  10. popular music

Origin of populace

1565–75; < French < Italian popolaccio, equivalent to popol(o) people + -accio pejorative suffix

Can be confusedpopulace population populous

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for populace

British Dictionary definitions for populace


/ (ˈpɒpjʊləs) /

noun (sometimes functioning as plural)

the inhabitants of an area
the common people; masses

Word Origin for populace

C16: via French from Italian popolaccio the common herd, from popolo people, from Latin populus

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for populace



1570s, from Middle French populace (16c.), from Italian popolaccio "riffraff, rabble," from popolo "people" (from Latin populus "people;" see people (n.)) + pejorative suffix -accio.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper