Definition of vulgarism in English:



  • 1A word or expression that is considered inelegant, especially one that makes explicit and offensive reference to sex or bodily functions.

    ‘he was hurling vulgarisms at the crowd’
    ‘this pronunciation was stigmatized as a vulgarism by some commentators’
    • ‘It's just spoken English, not just vulgarisms but slang and stuff like that.’
    • ‘In the history of genre-study or formalism, the Essay deserves a mention, particularly for its inclusiveness: prose, dialect, vulgarisms, and the low are all in.’
    • ‘The manuscript was intended to point out and correct vulgarisms that had entered the Latin language.’
    • ‘Oddly, in British English it is not these days a vulgarism, or at least only a very mild one.’
    • ‘The language that he described as American was full of regional variation, new words borrowed from immigrant groups, figurative usage from such institutions as railroading and baseball, jaunty slang, and raucous vulgarisms.’
    • ‘But Michelle can only think of vulgarisms: she stands for a generation that, like Shakespeare's Caliban, has yet to be taught a civilized language.’
    • ‘Therefore all the tricks of rhetoric were used: rhymes, puns, vulgarisms and homilies.’
    • ‘It's a neat theatrical trick that sees us introduced to the intentionally harsh vulgarisms of sexual parlance.’
    • ‘Orators are not improvising without adequate preparation; they are ‘winging it’ (this American vulgarism surely never arose till the 1990s?)’
    • ‘Elizabethan and even 18th century authors, who represent vulgarisms so frequently, do not seem to use omissions and misplacings of h's as a characteristic of low class speech.’
    • ‘They were, I thought, vulgarisms: just fashion and status accoutrements.’
    • ‘He was an editor who hated screen violence, and vulgarisms - ‘squeamish’, she called him - and there were constant battles over her copy.’
    • ‘Despite this, the police did absolutely nothing (the American vulgarism, Sweet Fanny Adam, is the expression which comes to mind) and stood by watching the fun.’
    wording, diction, phrasing, phraseology, style, vocabulary, terminology, expressions, turns of phrase, parlance, manner of speaking, manner of writing, way of talking, form of expression, mode of expression, usages, locutions, idiolect, choice of words, rhetoric, oratory
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1archaic An instance of rude or offensive behaviour.