- (in the French Revolution) a revolutionary of the poorer class: originally a term of contempt applied by the aristocrats but later adopted as a popular name by the revolutionaries.
- any extreme republican or revolutionary.
Origin of sans-culotte
Examples from the Web for sansculottism
Sansculottism will burn much; but what is incombustible it will not burn.
Maximum will be abolished; let Sansculottism find food where it can.
And thus has Sansculottism made prisoner its King; revoking his parole.
So dies Sansculottism, the body of Sansculottism, or is changed.
The keystone being struck out, the whole arch-work of Sansculottism began to crack, till the abyss had swallowed it all.The World's Greatest Books, Vol XII.
- (during the French Revolution)
- (originally) a revolutionary of the poorer class
- (later) any revolutionary, esp one having extreme republican sympathies
- any revolutionary extremist
Word Origin and History for sansculottism
also sansculotte, "lower-class republican of the French Revolution," 1790, from French, literally "without breeches;" see sans + cullotes. Usually explained as referring to the class whose distinctive costume was pantalons (long trousers) as opposed to the upper classes, which wore culottes (knee-breeches), but this is not certain. Related: Sans-culottes; sans-culotterie.