Hoi polloi: Wikis

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Hoi polloi (Ancient Greek: οἱ πολλοί), an expression meaning "the many", or in the strictest sense, "the majority" in Greek, is used in English to denote "the masses" or "the people", usually in a derogatory sense. Synonyms for "hoi polloi" include "...commoners, great unwashed, minions, multitude, plebeians, proletariat, rabble, rank and file, riffraff, the common people, the herd, the many, the masses, the plebs, the proles, the peons, the working class".[1]

The phrase became known to English scholars probably from Pericles' Funeral Oration, as mentioned in Thucydides' History of the Peloponnesian War. Pericles uses it in a positive way when praising the Athenian democracy, contrasting it with hoi oligoi, "the few" (Greek: οἱ ὀλίγοι, see also oligarchy)[2]

Its current English usage originated in the early 19th century, a time when it was generally accepted that one must be familiar with Greek and Latin in order to be considered well-educated.[3][4][5] The phrase was originally written in Greek letters.[6][7][8] Knowledge of these languages would serve to set apart the speaker from the common people who were not similarly educated.[6]

It is currently debated as to whether it is correct usage to include the English article "the" in front of the phrase, as is commonly done.[9]

Contents

Pronunciation

The phrase has three different pronunciations:

  • English speakers pronounce it /ˌhɔɪ pəˈlɔɪ/ hoy pə-loy.
  • Ancient Greek speakers pronounced it IPA: [hoi polˈloi]). Notice that double-λ is pronounced as such.
  • Modern Greek speakers pronounce it [i poˈli] ee po-LEE, since in Modern Greek there is no aspiration and οι is pronounced "ee" (all Ancient Greek diphthongs are now pronounced as monophthongs). Greek Cypriots still pronounce the double-λ ([i polˈli]).[10]

Appearances in the 19th Century

Lord Byron's view of the Hoi polloi

There have been numerous uses of the term in the English literature. James Fenimore Cooper, author of The Last of the Mohicans, is often credited with making the first recorded usage of the term in English.[11 ][12] The first recorded use by Cooper occurs in his 1837 work Gleanings from Europe where he writes "After which the oi polloi are enrolled as they can find interest."[13]

Lord Byron had, in fact, previously used the term in his letters and journal. In one journal entry, dated 24 November 1813, Byron writes "I have not answered W. Scott's last letter,—but I will. I regret to hear from others, that he has lately been unfortunate in pecuniary involvements. He is undoubtedly the Monarch of Parnassus, and the most English of bards. I should place Rogers next in the living list (I value him more as the last of the best school) —Moore and Campbell both third—Southey and Wordsworth and Coleridge—the rest, οι πολλοί [hoi polloi in Greek]—thus:— (see image reproduced on this page).[14][15]

Byron also wrote an 1821 entry in his journal "... one or two others, with myself, put on masks, and went on the stage with the 'oi polloi."[16]

W. S. Gilbert used the term in 1882 when he wrote the libretto of the comic opera Iolanthe. In Act I, the following exchange occurs between a group of disgruntled fairies who are arranging to elevate a lowly shepherd to the peerage, and members of the House of Lords who will not hear of such a thing.

PEERS: Our lordly style
You shall not quench
With base canaille!
FAIRIES: (That word is French.)
PEERS: Distinction ebbs
Before a herd
Of vulgar plebs!
FAIRIES: (A Latin word.)
PEERS: 'Twould fill with joy,
And madness stark
The hoi polloi!
FAIRIES: (A Greek remark.)

Gilbert's parallel use of canaille, plebs (plebeians), and hoi polloi makes it clear that the term is derogatory of the lower classes. In many versions of the vocal score, it is written as "οἱ πολλοί," likely confusing generations of amateur choristers who had not had the advantages of a British Public School education.

John Dryden used the phrase in his Essay of Dramatick Poesie, published in 1668. Dryden spells the phrase with Greek letters, but the rest of the sentence is in English (and he does precede it with "the").

Appearances in the 20th Century

The Three Stooges in Hoi Polloi (1935)

The term has appeared in several films and radio programs. One of the earliest short films from the Three Stooges was a 1935 film titled Hoi Polloi. The film opens in an exclusive restaurant where two wealthy gentlemen are arguing whether heredity or environment is more important in shaping character.[17] They make a bet and pick on nearby trashmen (the Stooges) to prove their theory. At the conclusion of three months in training, the Stooges attend a dinner party, where they thoroughly embarrass the professors.

The University of Dayton's Don Morlan says, "The theme in these shorts of the Stooges against the rich is bringing the rich down to their level and shaking their heads." A typical Stooges joke from the film is when someone addresses them as "gentlemen," and they look over their shoulders to see who was being addressed.[18] The Three Stooges turn the tables on their hosts by calling them "hoi polloi" at the end.

The term continues to be used in contemporary writing. In his 1983 introduction to Robert Anton Wilson's Prometheus Rising, Israel Regardie writes, "Once I was even so presumptuous as to warn (Wilson) in a letter that his humor was much too good to waste on hoi polloi who generally speaking would not understand it and might even resent it."[19]

The term "hoi polloi" was used in a dramatic scene in the 1989 film Dead Poets Society. In this scene, Professor Keating speaks negatively about the use of the article "the" in front of the phrase:

Keating: This is battle, boys. War! Your souls are at a critical juncture. Either you will succumb to the hoi polloi and the fruit will die on the vine—or you will triumph as individuals. It may be a coincidence that part of my duties are to teach you about Romanticism, but let me assure you that I take the task quite seriously. You will learn what this school wants you to learn in my class, but if I do my job properly, you will also learn a great deal more. You will learn to savor language and words because they are the stepping stones to everything you might endeavor to do in life and do well. A moment ago I used the term 'hoi polloi.' Who knows what it means? Come on, Overstreet, you twirp. (laughter) Anderson, are you a man or a boil?
Anderson shakes his head "no", but Meeks raises his hands and speaks: "The hoi polloi. Doesn't it mean the herd?"
Keating: Precisely, Meeks. Greek for the herd. However, be warned that, when you say "the hoi polloi" you are actually saying "the the herd." Indicating that you too are "hoi polloi".[20]

Keating's tone makes clear that he considers this statement to be an insult. He used the phrase "the hoi polloi," to demonstrate the mistake he warned against.

The term also used in the 1980 comedy film Caddyshack. In a rare moment of cleverness, Spaulding Smails greets Danny Noonan as he arrives for the christening of The Flying Wasp, the boat belonging to Judge Elihu Smails (Spaulding's grandfather), with "Ahoy, polloi!" This is particularly ironic, because Danny has just finished mowing the Judge's lawn, and arrives overdressed, wearing a sailboat captain's outfit (as the girl seated next to him points out, Danny "looks like Dick Cavett").[14]

Todd Rundgren's band Utopia recorded a song titled "Hoi Polloi" on their 1980 album Deface the Music, in which all of the songs are written and performed in the style of The Beatles.

The Lovin' Spoonful's song Jug Band Music includes the line He tried to mooch a towel from the hoi polloi.

In the song Risingson on Massive Attack's Mezzanine album, the singer apparently appeals to his company to leave the club they're in, deriding the common persons' infatuation with them, and implying that he's about to slide into antisocial behaviour:

Toy-like people make me boy-like (...)
And everything you got, hoi polloi like
Now you're lost and you're lethal
And now's about the time you gotta leave all
These good people...dream on.
[21]

In an episode of This American Life, radio host Ira Glass uses the term hoi polloi while relaying a story about a woman who believes the letter 'q' should occur later in the alphabet. He goes on to say that "Q does not belong in the middle of the alphabet where it is, with the hoi polloi of the alphabet, with your 'm' 'n' and 'p'. Letters that will just join any word for the asking."

The term was used in a first-series episode (The New Vicar, aired 5 November 1990) of the British sitcom Keeping Up Appearances. The main character, Hyacinth Bucket, gets into a telephone argument with a bakery employee. When the employee abruptly hangs up in frustration, Hyacinth disparagingly refers to him as "hoi polloi." This is in keeping with her character; she looks down upon those she considers to be of lesser social standing, including working-class people.[22]

The first scene in Playstation Double life

Hoi Polloi was used in Larry Marder's Tales of the Beanworld to name the unusual group of creatures that lived beneath the Beanworld.[23]

In the first scene of The Playstation ad, Double life, a British man says "In the day, I do my job, I ride the bus, Roll up my sleeves with the Hoi polloi".

Appearances in the 21st Century

The August 14, 2001 episode of CNN's Larry King Live program included a discussion about whether the sport of polo was an appropriate part of the image of the British Royal Family. Joining King on the program were "best-selling biographer and veteran royal watcher Robert Lacey" and Kitty Kelley, author of the book The Royals. Their discussions focused on Prince Charles and his son Prince William.

Lacey said, "There is another risk that I see in polo. Polo is a very nouveau riche, I think, rather vulgar game. I can say that having played it myself, and I don't think it does Prince Charles's image, or, I dare say, this is probably arrogant of me, his spirit any good. I don't think it is a good thing for him to be involved in. I also, I'm afraid, don't think [polo] is a good thing for [Charles] to be encouraging his sons to get involved in. It is a very "playboy" set. We saw Harry recently all night clubbing, and why not, some might say, playing polo down in the south of Spain. I think the whole polo syndrome is something that the royal family would do very well to get uninvolved with as soon as possible.
King turned the question to Kelley, saying, "Kitty, it is kind of hoi polloi, although it is an incredible sport in which, I have been told, that the horse is 80 percent of the game, the rider 20 percent. But it is a great sport to watch. But it is hoi polloi isn't it?"
To which Kelley replied, "Yes, I do agree with Robert. The time is come and gone for the royals to be involved with polo. I mean it is – it just increases that dissipated aristo-image that they have, and it is too bad to encourage someone like Prince William to get involved."[24]

The term also appears in the 2003 Broadway musical Wicked, where it is used by the characters Elphaba and Glinda to refer to the many inhabitants of the Emerald City: "... I wanna be in this hoi polloi ..."[25]

Jack Cafferty, a CNN anchorman, was caught misusing the term. On 9 December 2004 he retracted his statement, saying "And hoi-polloi refers to common people, not those rich morons that are evicting those two red-tail hawks (ph) from that 5th Avenue co-op. I misused the word hoi-polloi. And for that I humbly apologize."[26]

New media and new inventions have also been described as being by or for the hoi polloi. Bob Garfield, co-host of NPR's On the Media program, 8 November 2005, used the phrase in reference to evolving practices in the media, especially Wikipedia, "The people in the encyclopedia business, I understand, tend to sniff at the wiki process as being the product of the mere hoi polloi."[27] The blog Isengard.gov referred to the $100 PC project as being for kids and the hoi polloi. The post went on to refer to the correct usage of the phrase, "*Although we at Isengard.gov are using the Greek phrase hoi polloi in its correct meaning of "the common people," rather than the incorrect but more hoi-polloish meaning of "the hoity-toities," "the fancy-living types," the "ravenous blood-sucking leeches fattening their stomachs on the backs of the masses," or "THE ARISTOCRATS!," it does not, in and of itself, indicate that we are insufferable smarty-pants. That may be established by independent means."[28]

Duran Duran lead singer and lyricist Simon le Bon has included the phrase in the band's song Skin Divers from their November release Red Carpet Massacre: Fighting on the shore, The hoi polloi want more, Howling bloody murder, but it's nothing just a murmur.[29]

Gossip Girl (TV series) character Chuck Bass refers to fellow character Dan Humphrey as hoi polloi in episode 14 of the second season, "In The Realm of the Basses" He says "that's the problem with an open invitation. No way to keep out the hoi polloi."

Dottore Massimo in The Thief Lord (film) says to his son Scipio "What have I told you about mixing with the hoi polloi?" He is referring to Scipio's friendship with Prosper and Bo, two brothers that are poor runaways.

Kay D. Smith and Marc Tall have produced a dance music collaboration titled Hoipolloi.[30]

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List of 21st century commercial uses

The phrase Hoi Polloi has been used to promote products and businesses. As described by the Pittsburgh Dish, the name "Hoi Polloi" may be chosen to indicate that the brand or service will appeal to the "common people".[31]

The phrase has also been used in commercial works as the name a race of people.

References

  1. ^ Roget’s New Millennium Thesaurus. Lexico Publishing Group, LLC.. http://thesaurus.reference.com/browse/Hoi%20polloi. Retrieved 2006-07-12.  
  2. ^ Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War, Book 2.34-46: "καὶ ὄνομα μὲν διὰ τὸ μὴ ἐς ὀλίγους ἀλλ᾿ ἐς πλείονας οἰκεῖν δημοκρατία κέκληται " ("It is true that we are called a democracy, for the administration is in the hands of the many and not of the few").
  3. ^ Rexine, John E.. Review of The Scientist's Thesaurus: A Treasury of the Stock Words of Science by George F. Steffanides. The Modern Language Journal, Vol. 62, No. 5/6 (Sep - Oct., 1978). pp. 291.  
  4. ^ "British studies: the eighteenth century, a guide to topics in the Michigan state university libraries' collections". July 15, 2003. http://www.lib.msu.edu/guides/subjects/history/british/britishleaflet.htm. Retrieved 2007-01-15.  
  5. ^ "Glossary of Colloquialisms starting with "H"". Translation Directory.com. http://www.translationdirectory.com/glossaries/glossary014_h.htm. Retrieved 2007-01-15.  
  6. ^ a b "The Maven's Word of the Day". Random House. November 13, 1998. http://www.randomhouse.com/wotd/index.pperl?date=19981113. Retrieved 2007-01-15.  
  7. ^ Editors of Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, Tenth Edition "Blue plate special"; how to use "hoi polloi; "Peck's Bad Boy October 28, 2003, Jewish World Review.
  8. ^ Lord Byron Lord Byron's Letters and Journals November 24, 1813.
  9. ^ Google search for "the hoi polloi."
  10. ^ "The chicken and the egg: the pluralism of Greek spelling". Athens News. http://www.athensnews.gr/paideia/1pai4.htm. Retrieved 2007-01-15.  
  11. ^ American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition.
  12. ^ The Literature Network.
  13. ^ Cooper, James Fenimore Gleanings from Europe, 1837.
  14. ^ a b "HOI POLLOI: Word of the Day". November 25, 2006. http://kmecholsky.multiply.com/journal. Retrieved 2007-01-15.  
  15. ^ Byron, George Gordon, 6th Baron Byron. "Byron's 1813 diary". Project Gutenberg. http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext05/8bpt110.txt. Retrieved 2006-06-13.  
  16. ^ Lord Byron Detached Thoughts, 1821.
  17. ^ New York Times Movies
  18. ^ von Busack, Richard, Pure Slap Shtik Metro Santa Cruz - January 16–22, 1997.
  19. ^ Regardie, Israel Introduction Prometheus 1983.
  20. ^ Schulman, Tom Excerpts from the script of Dead Poets Society.
  21. ^ Alwaysontherun.net. Risingson. Accessed on 14 February 2007.
  22. ^ Keeping Up Appearances 02 - Welcoming The Dishy Vicar [1]. Accessed on 11 May 2007.
  23. ^ "Larry Marder’s Tales of the Beanworld - The Beanworld Glossary". RDrop.com. http://www.rdrop.com/~half/BeanWeb/Glossary.html. Retrieved 2008-02-06.  
  24. ^ Larry King Live
  25. ^ Schwartz, Stephen. "Wicked Lyrics - "One Short Day"". musicalschwartz.com. http://www.musicalschwartz.com/wicked-lyrics-9.htm. Retrieved 2007-01-15.  
  26. ^ American Morning Transcript
  27. ^ On the Media
  28. ^ User "Sea Lord" - The Handcranked Laptop Isengard.gov 29 September 2005
  29. ^ "Skin Divers lyrics". Metro Lyrics.com. http://www.metrolyrics.com/skin-divers-lyrics-duran-duran.html. Retrieved 2008-02-06.  
  30. ^ http://www.highcontrastrecords.com/release.php?rel_id=323
  31. ^ "The Dish on Dish: Hoi Polloi". Pittsburgh Dish. January 28, 2008. http://pittsburghdish.typepad.com/pittsburgh_dish/north_side/index.html. Retrieved 2008-02-06.  
  32. ^ Hoipolloi Theatre.
  33. ^ Hoi Polloi dance group.
  34. ^ Hoi Polloi boutique.
  35. ^ Hoi Polloi film crew.
  36. ^ "Hoi Polloi Makes It Possible for Free Calls to China, Hong Kong (Mobile), Singapore, and Numerous Other Countries from the U.S.". ECNext.com. http://goliath.ecnext.com/coms2/gi_0199-5927720/Hoi-Polloi-Makes-It-Possible.html. Retrieved 2008-02-06.  
  37. ^ "Hoi Polloi". Typepad.com. http://hoipolloi.typepad.com/. Retrieved 2008-02-06.  
  38. ^ McNulty, Robert. "hoi polloi - A Literary Journal for the Rest of Us". Lulu.com.  
  39. ^ "Ahoi Polloi". blogger.de. http://ahoipolloi.blogger.de/. Retrieved 2008-09-16.  
  40. ^ "Advance Wars: Dual Strike - Game Script v1.01". GameFaqs.com. December 2005. http://www.gamefaqs.com/portable/ds/file/924889/39218. Retrieved 2008-02-06.  

External links


This article is about the Greek expression. You may or may not be looking for the Scottish punk band Oi Polloi.

Hoi polloi (Ancient Greek: οἱ πολλοί), an expression meaning "the many", or in the strictest sense, "the majority" in Greek, is used in English to denote "the masses" or "the people", usually in a derogatory sense. Synonyms for "hoi polloi" include "... commoners, great unwashed, minions, multitude, plebeians, proletariat, rank and file, riffraff, the common people, the herd, the many, the plebs, the proles, the peons, the working class".[1]

The phrase became known to English scholars probably from Pericles' Funeral Oration, as mentioned in Thucydides' History of the Peloponnesian War. Pericles uses it in a positive way when praising the Athenian democracy, contrasting it with hoi oligoi, "the few" (Greek: οἱ ὀλίγοι, see also oligarchy)[2]

Its current English usage originated in the early 19th century, a time when it was generally accepted that one must be familiar with Greek and Latin in order to be considered well-educated.[3][4][5] The phrase was originally written in Greek letters.[6][7][8] Knowledge of these languages served to set apart the speaker from the common people who were not similarly educated.[6]

The common practice of using the seemingly redundant English article "the" preceding the phrase (literally, "the the many") is subject to debate amongst some prescriptivists.[9]

Contents

Pronunciation

The phrase has three different pronunciations:

  • English speakers pronounce it /ˌhɔɪ pəˈlɔɪ/ Template:Sc pə-Template:Sc.
  • Ancient Greek speakers pronounced it IPA: [hoi polˈloi]). Notice that double-λ is pronounced as such.
  • Modern Greek speakers pronounce it [i poˈli] ee po-LEE, since in Modern Greek there is no aspiration and οι is pronounced "ee" (all Ancient Greek diphthongs are now pronounced as monophthongs). Greek Cypriots still pronounce the double-λ ([i polˈli]).[10]

Appearances in the 19th century

's view of the Hoi polloi]] There have been numerous uses of the term in the English literature. James Fenimore Cooper, author of The Last of the Mohicans, is often credited with making the first recorded usage of the term in English.[11][12] The first recorded use by Cooper occurs in his 1837 work Gleanings in Europe where he writes "After which the oi polloi are enrolled as they can find interest."[13]

Lord Byron had, in fact, previously used the term in his letters and journal. In one journal entry, dated 24 November 1813, Byron writes "I have not answered W. Scott's last letter,—but I will. I regret to hear from others, that he has lately been unfortunate in pecuniary involvements. He is undoubtedly the Monarch of Parnassus, and the most English of bards. I should place Rogers next in the living list (I value him more as the last of the best school) —Moore and Campbell both third—Southey and Wordsworth and Coleridge—the rest, οι πολλοί [hoi polloi in Greek]—thus:— (see image reproduced on this page).[14][15]

Byron also wrote an 1821 entry in his journal "... one or two others, with myself, put on masks, and went on the stage with the 'oi polloi."[16]

W. S. Gilbert used the term in 1882 when he wrote the libretto of the comic opera Iolanthe. In Act I, the following exchange occurs between a group of disgruntled fairies who are arranging to elevate a lowly shepherd to the peerage, and members of the House of Lords who will not hear of such a thing.

PEERS: Our lordly style
You shall not quench
With base canaille!
FAIRIES: (That word is French.)
PEERS: Distinction ebbs
Before a herd
Of vulgar plebs!
FAIRIES: (A Latin word.)
PEERS: 'Twould fill with joy,
And madness stark
The hoi polloi!
FAIRIES: (A Greek remark.)

Gilbert's parallel use of canaille, plebs (plebeians), and hoi polloi makes it clear that the term is derogatory of the lower classes. In many versions of the vocal score, it is written as "οἱ πολλοί," likely confusing generations of amateur choristers who had not had the advantages of a British Public School education.

John Dryden used the phrase in his Essay of Dramatick Poesie, published in 1668. Dryden spells the phrase with Greek letters, but the rest of the sentence is in English (and he does precede it with "the").

Appearances in the 20th century

in Hoi Polloi (1935)]]

The term has appeared in several films and radio programs. One of the earliest short films from the Three Stooges was a 1935 film titled Hoi Polloi. The film opens in an exclusive restaurant where two wealthy gentlemen are arguing whether heredity or environment is more important in shaping character.[17] They make a bet and pick on nearby trashmen (the Stooges) to prove their theory. At the conclusion of three months in training, the Stooges attend a dinner party, where they thoroughly embarrass the professors.

The University of Dayton's Don Morlan says, "The theme in these shorts of the Stooges against the rich is bringing the rich down to their level and shaking their heads." A typical Stooges joke from the film is when someone addresses them as "gentlemen," and they look over their shoulders to see who was being addressed.[18] The Three Stooges turn the tables on their hosts by calling them "hoi polloi" at the end.

The term continues to be used in contemporary writing. In his 1983 introduction to Robert Anton Wilson's Prometheus Rising, Israel Regardie writes, "Once I was even so presumptuous as to warn (Wilson) in a letter that his humor was much too good to waste on hoi polloi who generally speaking would not understand it and might even resent it."[19]

The term "hoi polloi" was used in a dramatic scene in the 1989 film Dead Poets Society. In this scene, Professor Keating speaks negatively about the use of the article "the" in front of the phrase:

Keating: This is battle, boys. War! Your souls are at a critical juncture. Either you will succumb to the hoi polloi and the fruit will die on the vine—or you will triumph as individuals. It may be a coincidence that part of my duties are to teach you about Romanticism, but let me assure you that I take the task quite seriously. You will learn what this school wants you to learn in my class, but if I do my job properly, you will also learn a great deal more. You will learn to savor language and words because they are the stepping stones to everything you might endeavor to do in life and do well. A moment ago I used the term 'hoi polloi.' Who knows what it means? Come on, Overstreet, you twirp. (laughter) Anderson, are you a man or a boil?
Anderson shakes his head "no", but Meeks raises his hands and speaks: "The hoi polloi. Doesn't it mean the herd?"
Keating: Precisely, Meeks. Greek for the herd. However, be warned that, when you say "the hoi polloi" you are actually saying "the the herd." Indicating that you too are "hoi polloi".[20]

Keating's tone makes clear that he considers this statement to be an insult. He used the phrase "the hoi polloi," to demonstrate the mistake he warned against.

The term also used in the 1980 comedy film Caddyshack. In a rare moment of cleverness, Spaulding Smails greets Danny Noonan as he arrives for the christening of The Flying Wasp, the boat belonging to Judge Elihu Smails (Spaulding's grandfather), with "Ahoy, polloi! Where did you come from, a scotch ad?" This is particularly ironic, because Danny has just finished mowing the Judge's lawn, and arrives overdressed, wearing a sailboat captain's outfit (as the girl seated next to him points out, Danny "looks like Dick Cavett").[14]

Todd Rundgren's band Utopia recorded a song titled "Hoi Polloi" on their 1980 album Deface the Music, in which all of the songs are written and performed in the style of The Beatles.

The Lovin' Spoonful's song Jug Band Music includes the line He tried to mooch a towel from the hoi polloi.

In the song Risingson on Massive Attack's Mezzanine album, the singer apparently appeals to his company to leave the club they're in, deriding the common persons' infatuation with them, and implying that he's about to slide into antisocial behaviour:

Toy-like people make me boy-like (...)
And everything you got, hoi polloi like
Now you're lost and you're lethal
And now's about the time you gotta leave all
These good people...dream on.
[21]

In an episode of This American Life, radio host Ira Glass uses the term hoi polloi while relaying a story about a woman who believes the letter 'q' should occur later in the alphabet. He goes on to say that "Q does not belong in the middle of the alphabet where it is, with the hoi polloi of the alphabet, with your 'm' 'n' and 'p'. Letters that will just join any word for the asking."

The term was used in a first-series episode (The New Vicar, aired 5 November 1990) of the British sitcom Keeping Up Appearances. The main character, Hyacinth Bucket, gets into a telephone argument with a bakery employee. When the employee abruptly hangs up in frustration, Hyacinth disparagingly refers to him as "hoi polloi." This is in keeping with her character; she looks down upon those she considers to be of lesser social standing, including working-class people.[22]

File:Double
The first scene in Double Life

Hoi Polloi was used in Larry Marder's Tales of the Beanworld to name the unusual group of creatures that lived beneath the Beanworld.[23]

In the first scene of The Playstation ad, Double life, a British man says "In the day, I do my job, I ride the bus, Roll up my sleeves with the Hoi polloi".

==Appearances in leeches fattening their stomachs on the backs of the masses," or "THE ARISTOCRATS!," it does not, in and of itself, indicate that we are insufferable smarty-pants. That may be established by independent means."{{broken ref|msg=Cite error: Closing missing for tag; see the [[Help:Cite errors/Cite error included ref|help page]]}}


===List of 21st century commercial uses===The phrase Hoi Polloi has been used to promote products and businesses. As described by the Pittsburgh Dish, the name "Hoi Polloi" may be chosen to indicate that the brand or service will appeal to the "common people".[24] an up and coming theatre company in New York, a dance group baed in New York City,[25] a woman's boutique iarchivedate = 2007-12-04}}*Hoi Polloi is the name of many businesses, including Hoipolloi a theatre company based in Cambridge in the United Kingdom,{{broken ref|msg=Cite error: Closing missing for tag; see the [[Help:Cite errors/Cite error included ref|help page]]}}

a film crew in he United Kingdom,[26] and a global telecommunications company.[27]
  • Oi Polloi is a Scottish archo-punk group, whose name is a pun on the term, and also Oi! music. Hoi Polloi was an alternative gospel band from New Zealand.Communications]] blog by Angelo Fernando, a business writer covering technology, marketing, and interactive media.[28]
  • Hoi Polloi is the title of a literary journal produced by Dog Days Press in Massachusetts.[29]
  • Ahoi Polloi is the name of a well-known German cartoon blog.[30]

The phrase has also been used in commercial works as the name a race of people.

References

  1. ^ Roget’s New Millennium Thesaurus. Lexico Publishing Group, LLC.. http://thesaurus.reference.com/browse/Hoi%20polloi. Retrieved 2006-07-12. 
  2. ^ Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War, Book 2.34-46: "καὶ ὄνομα μὲν διὰ τὸ μὴ ἐς ὀλίγους ἀλλ᾿ ἐς πλείονας οἰκεῖν δημοκρατία κέκληται " ("It is true that we are called a democracy, for the administration is in the hands of the many and not of the few").
  3. ^ Rexine, John E.. Review of The Scientist's Thesaurus: A Treasury of the Stock Words of Science by George F. Steffanides. The Modern Language Journal, Vol. 62, No. 5/6 (Sep - Oct., 1978). pp. 291. 
  4. ^ "British studies: the eighteenth century, a guide to topics in the Michigan state university libraries' collections". July 15, 2003. Archived from the original on 2006-09-05. http://web.archive.org/web/20060905025734/http://www.lib.msu.edu/guides/subjects/history/british/britishleaflet.htm. Retrieved 2007-01-15. 
  5. ^ "Glossary of Colloquialisms starting with "H"". Translation Directory.com. http://www.translationdirectory.com/glossaries/glossary014_h.htm. Retrieved 2007-01-15. 
  6. ^ a b "The Maven's Word of the Day". Random House. November 13, 1998. http://www.randomhouse.com/wotd/index.pperl?date=19981113. Retrieved 2007-01-15. 
  7. ^ Editors of Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, Tenth Edition "Blue plate special"; how to use "hoi polloi; "Peck's Bad Boy October 28, 2003, Jewish World Review.
  8. ^ Lord Byron Lord Byron's Letters and Journals November 24, 1813.
  9. ^ Google search for "the hoi polloi."
  10. ^ "The chicken and the egg: the pluralism of Greek spelling". Athens News. Archived from the original on 2006-12-10. http://web.archive.org/web/20061210083026/http://www.athensnews.gr/paideia/1pai4.htm. Retrieved 2007-01-15. 
  11. ^ American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition.
  12. ^ The Literature Network.
  13. ^ Cooper, James Fenimore Gleanings in Europe: England 1837.
  14. ^ a b "Hoi polloi: Word of the Day". November 25, 2006. http://kmecholsky.multiply.com/journal. Retrieved 2007-01-15. 
  15. ^ Byron, George Gordon, 6th Baron Byron. "Byron's 1813 diary". Project Gutenberg. http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext05/8bpt110.txt. Retrieved 2006-06-13. 
  16. ^ Lord Byron Detached Thoughts, 1821.
  17. ^ New York Times Movies
  18. ^ von Busack, Richard, Pure Slap Shtik Metro Santa Cruz - January 16–22, 1997.
  19. ^ Regardie, Israel Introduction Prometheus 1983.
  20. ^ Schulman, Tom Excerpts from the script of Dead Poets Society.
  21. ^ Alwaysontherun.net. Risingson. Accessed on 14 February 2007.
  22. ^ Keeping Up Appearances 02 - Welcoming The Dishy Vicar Divxmoviesenglishsubtitles.com Accessed on 11 May 2007.
  23. ^ "Larry Marder’s Tales of the Beanworld - The Beanworld Glossary". RDrop.com. http://www.rdrop.com/~half/BeanWeb/Glossary.html. Retrieved 2008-02-06. 
  24. ^ {{Cite news| url=http://pittsburghdish.typepad.com/pittsburgh_dish/north_side/index.html | title=The Dish on Dish: Hoi Polloi | work=Pittsburgh Dish | date=January 28, 2008 | accessdate=2008-02-06 |archiveurl = http://web.archive.org/web/20071204140338/http://pittsburghdish.typepad.com/pittsburgh_dish/north_side/index.html |Theatre].
  25. ^ Hoi Polloi dance group.
  26. ^ Hoi Polloi film crew.
  27. ^ "Hoi Polloi Makes It Possible for Free Calls to China, Hong Kong (Mobile), Singapore, and Numerous Other Countries from the U.S.". ECNext.com. http://goliath.ecnext.com/coms2/gi_0199-5927720/Hoi-Polloi-Makes-It-Possible.html. Retrieved 2008-02-06. 
  28. ^ "Hoi Polloi". Typepad.com. http://hoipolloi.typepad.com/. Retrieved 2008-02-06. 
  29. ^ McNulty, Robert. "hoi polloi - A Literary Journal for the Rest of Us". Lulu.com. 
  30. ^ "Ahoi Polloi". blogger.de. http://ahoipolloi.blogger.de/. Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  31. ^ "Advance Wars: Dual Strike - Game Script v1.01". GameFaqs.com. December 2005. http://www.gamefaqs.com/portable/ds/file/924889/39218. Retrieved 2008-02-06. 

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