hoi polloi : Common Errors in English

About hoi polloi

Hoi polloi is Greek for “the common people,” but it is often misused tomean “the upper class” (does “hoi” make speakers think of “high” or"hoity-toity"?). Some urge that since “hoi” is the article “the hoipolloi” is redundant; but the general rule is that articles such as"the” and “a” in foreign language phrases cease to function as such inplace names, brands, and catch phrases except for some of the mostfamiliar ones in French and Spanish, where everyone recognizes “la"—forinstance—as meaning “the.” “The El Nino” is redundant, but “the hoipolloi” is standard English.

hoi polloi Meaning(s)

  • (n) the common people generally

hoi polloi in News

  • Meet the French DJ Who Ruined the Hamptons' Fourth of July

    The good people of the Hamptons, the Shangri-La beachside escape for New Yorkers of means and linen pants, were cruelly let down this weekend when Cedric Gervais, a famous French DJ, failed to show up and play his one really famous song, which involves no live instruments and is just a thinly-veiled reference to the drug Ecstasy. Even worse, he ditched them for the Midwestern hoi polloi of ...
    on July 8, 2013 Source: The Atlantic Wire via Yahoo! News

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