(French sans-culotte, "without breeches") In the French Revolution, one of the ill-clad and ill-equipped volunteers of the Revolutionary army; also a Parisian ultrademocrat of the Revolution.

The working-class sansculottes wore long trousers to distinguish themselves from the upper classes, who wore knee-breeches (culotte). Allied with the Jacobins (see Jacobin Club) in the Reign of Terror, sansculottes included ultrademocrats of all classes. Their influence waned after the fall of Maximilien Robespierre in 1794. See also Jacques Hébert.

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French  sans-culotte ("without knee breeches") 

      in the French Revolution, a label for the more militant supporters of that movement, especially in the years 1792 to 1795. Sansculottes presented themselves as members of the poorer classes or leaders of the common people, but during the Reign of Terror (Terror, Reign of) public functionaries and educated men also adopted the label to demonstrate their patriotism.

      The distinctive costume of the typical sansculotte was the pantalon (long trousers) in place of the culotte (silk breeches) worn by the upper classes, as well as the carmagnole (short jacket) and the red cap of liberty. Jacques-René Hébert (Hébert, Jacques-René)'s popular newspaper, the Père Duchesne, did much to spread the image of the sansculotte: a woodcut on the front page of each issue showed a man in Revolutionary costume, holding a musket and smoking a pipe.

      The influence of the sansculottes declined sharply after Hébert's execution in March 1794. The defeat of the desperate popular uprisings of Germinal and Prairial, year III (spring of 1795), marked the end of their public role.

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  • sansculotte — noun Etymology: French sans culotte, literally, without breeches Date: 1790 1. an extreme radical republican in France at the time of the French Revolution 2. a radical or violent extremist in politics • sansculottic adjective • sansculottish… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • sansculotte — noun a) person who lacks culture and refinement b) lower class person …   Wiktionary

  • Sansculotte — Sans|cu|lot|te [sãsky lɔt(ə) ], der; n, n […tn̩] [frz. sans culotte, eigtl. = ohne Kniehose, ↑ Culotte]: Proletarier, proletarischer Revolutionär der Französischen Revolution. * * * Sans|cu|lot|te [sãsky lɔt(ə)], der; , n [̩; frz. sans… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Sansculotte — Sans|cu|lọt|te 〈 [sãky ] m.; Gen.: n, Pl.: n; Politik〉 während der Französ. Revolution Spottname für die proletar. Revolutionäre, weil sie keine Kniehosen wie die höheren Stände, sondern lange Hosen trugen [Etym.: <frz. sans culotte »ohne… …   Lexikalische Deutsches Wörterbuch

  • Sansculotte — Sans|cu|lot|te [sãsky lɔtə] der; n, n <aus gleichbed. fr. sans culotte, eigtl. »ohne Kniehose«, urspr. Spottname, da die Revolutionäre mit langen Hosen (pantalons) anstelle der von den Aristokraten getragenen Kniehosen (culottes) bekleidet… …   Das große Fremdwörterbuch

  • sansculotte —  (In French, sans culotte.) Without breeches ; an extreme revolutionary or republican. French revolutionaries were so called because they wore pantaloons rather than breeches …   Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors

  • sansculotte — n. (French) extreme radical republican in France during the Revolution; violent and strong extremist in politics …   English contemporary dictionary

  • sansculotte —    (sanh kü LOT) [French: without knee breeches] Originally, a term of contempt applied by aristocrats to anyone belonging to the poorer class of French revolutionaries in 1789; the name comes from the fact that such people dressed in long… …   Dictionary of foreign words and phrases

  • sansculotte — sans·cu·lotte …   English syllables

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