"pleb", the new four-letter word

Tom Zurinskas truespel at HOTMAIL.COM
Sun Oct 21 08:32:41 UTC 2012

In thefreedictionary.com the entry "pleb" returns the plural "plebs" which is defined and pronounced ~plebz  but  can also be spelled "plebes" and pronounced ~pleebeez

plebs  (plbz)
n. pl. ple·bes (plbz)
1. The common people of ancient Rome: the plebs and the patricians.
2. The common people; the populace.
[Latin plbs; see pel-1 in Indo-European roots.]

Tom Zurinskas, Conn 20 yrs, Tenn 3, NJ 33, now Fl 9.
See how English spelling links to sounds at http://justpaste.it/ayk

> Date: Sat, 20 Oct 2012 21:23:16 -0400
> From: Berson at ATT.NET
> Subject: "pleb", the new four-letter word
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster: "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject: "pleb", the new four-letter word
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> From the NYTimes on-line, yesterday (today in print, I think):
> >UK Govt Minister Quits Over Clash With Police
> >
> >LONDON (AP) ­ A key member of Prime Minister
> >David Cameron's government quit Friday amid a
> >simmering dispute over an incident last month in
> >which he was accused of abusing police officers
> >with foul language and derogatory remarks about working class people.
> >
> >In an official record of the confrontation on
> >Sept. 19, a police officer insisted Mitchell had
> >sworn and used the words "moron" and "pleb" ­ a
> >pejorative term for the working class. Mitchell
> >acknowledged he had sworn, but bitterly denied using the other words.
> >...
> >Pleb ­ short for plebeian ­ comes from the Latin
> >plebeius, the mass of ordinary citizens apart
> >from the elite of upper-class patricians.
> Since Mitchell admitted to swearing but "bitterly
> denied" that he had used "the other words", I
> conclude that "pleb" must be the less acceptable
> in the polite company of police officers.
> Joel
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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