[prohl, proh-lee]

noun Informal.

a member of the proletariat.
a person who performs routine tasks in a society.


Origin of prole

First recorded in 1885–90; shortened form of proletariat Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for proles

proletariat, workfolk, workpeople

Examples from the Web for proles

Contemporary Examples of proles

Historical Examples of proles

British Dictionary definitions for proles


noun, adjective

derogatory, slang, mainly British short for proletarian
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 proles

"offspring," 1670s, from Latin proles "offspring, progeny" (see prolific).



short for proletarian (n.), 1887 (G.B. Shaw); popularized by George Orwell's 1949 novel "Nineteen Eighty-Four." As an adjective from 1938. Related: Proly (adj.); prolier-than-thou.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper