[ proh-li-tair-ee-uhn ]
See synonyms for: proletarianproletarians on

  1. pertaining or belonging to the proletariat.

  2. (in ancient Rome) belonging to the lowest or poorest class of the people.

  1. a member of the proletariat.

Origin of proletarian

First recorded in 1650–60; see origin at proletary, -an

Other words from proletarian

  • pro·le·tar·i·an·ly, adverb
  • pro·le·tar·i·an·ness, noun
  • half-pro·le·tar·i·an, adjective
  • non·pro·le·tar·i·an, adjective, noun

Words Nearby proletarian Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use proletarian in a sentence

  • I shall always think of him in his proletarian grey woollen underdrawers and undershirt.

    Tramping on Life | Harry Kemp
  • Whether capitalist or proletarian, reformer or liberal, we have all along been behaving and thinking in soviet fashion.

    The Behavior of Crowds | Everett Dean Martin
  • Their support for a genuinely proletarian revolution can hardly be expected, on Loria's own theory.

    Karl Marx | Achille Loria

British Dictionary definitions for proletarian


less commonly proletary (ˈprəʊlɪtərɪ, -trɪ)

/ (ˌprəʊlɪˈtɛərɪən) /

  1. of, relating, or belonging to the proletariat

nounplural -tarians or -taries
  1. a member of the proletariat

Origin of proletarian

C17: from Latin prōlētārius one whose only contribution to the state was his offspring, from prōlēs offspring

Derived forms of proletarian

  • proletarianism, noun
  • proletarianness, noun

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