- The working class or lower class.
1906, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, Manifesto of the Communist Party, page 173:
- "Of all the classes that stand face to face with the bourgeoisie to day the proletariat alone is a really revolutionary class."
- The wage earners collectively, excluding salaried workers.
- (historical) In ancient Rome, the lowest class of citizens, who had no property; "regarded as contributing nothing to the state but offspring" (OED, 1992).
working class or lower class
lowest class of citizens in Rome