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Bourgeois is a French adjective. often used in both English and French substantively.

  • It is pronounced in an English approximation of the French, 'BOORJ-wah', IPA: /ˈbuːərÊ’ wɑː/. The feminine form in French is bourgeoise, 'BOORJ-wahz', IPA: /ˈbuːərÊ’ wɑːz/. The masculine and epicene plural in French is identical with the masculine singular; the feminine plural has a diffewrent form from, but the same pronunciation as, the feminine singular: bourgeoises, 'BOORJ-wahz', IPA: /ˈbuːərÊ’ wɑːz/. It is not necessary in English to use any other form than bourgeois, but some writers enjoy demonstrating their knowledge of French by doing so.
  • The abstract noun and collective noun meaning 'bourgeois people considered as a whole', or 'the habits of thought, culture and so on associated with bourgeois people' is bourgeoisie ('boorj-wah-ZEE', /ËŒbuːərÊ’ wɑːz ˈiː}}.
  • A bourgeois[e] was primarily a citizen of a bourg, the French equivalent of a burgh. (This meaning could be more loosely applied to citizens of towns outside France.) A bourgeois was of a different rank and statue to the gentry above and the peasantry below, by virtue of income earned and wealth gained by trade - which to engage in which was beneath the dignity of the gentry. This 'middle class' was later divided for the convenience of making social distinctions into
Etymological note: