9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[big-uh t] /ˈbɪg ət/
a person who is utterly intolerant of any differing creed, belief, or opinion.
Origin of bigot
1590-1600; < Middle French (Old French: derogatory name applied by the French to the Normans), perhaps < Old English bī God by God Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for bigots
  • Here's one: fire bad teachers at the first signs of blatant incompetence, and start with the bigots.
  • While you are being bigots towards people in business programs someone else is saying the same about your disciple.
  • But few non-bigots thought that their personal distaste warranted limiting the freedom of others.
  • The zealots, bigots and creeps on both sides come across with equal clarity.
  • These forums are not intended as a place for bigots to rant.
  • The question is whether he deliberately appealed to bigots, as a political tactic.
  • Neither the film's smug white bigots nor its uniformly noble blacks are well served by such oversimplification.
  • She converted white bigots' hatred into artistic energy.
  • When that happens it will be much easier to reach the racists and the bigots and show them the error of their ways.
  • Many of them are humane in private and not bigots in any personal way.
British Dictionary definitions for bigots


a person who is intolerant of any ideas other than his or her own, esp on religion, politics, or race
Derived Forms
bigoted, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Old French: name applied contemptuously to the Normans by the French, of obscure origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for bigots



1590s, "sanctimonious person, religious hypocrite," from French bigot (12c.), of unknown origin. Earliest French use of the word is as the name of a people apparently in southern Gaul, which led to the now-doubtful, on phonetic grounds, theory that the word comes from Visigothus. The typical use in Old French seems to have been as a derogatory nickname for Normans, the old theory (not universally accepted) being that it springs from their frequent use of the Germanic oath bi God. But OED dismisses in a three-exclamation-mark fury one fanciful version of the "by god" theory as "absurdly incongruous with facts." At the end, not much is left standing except Spanish bigote "mustache," which also has been proposed but not explained, and the chief virtue of which as a source seems to be there is no evidence for or against it.

In support of the "by God" theory, as a surname Bigott, Bygott are attested in Normandy and in England from the 11c., and French name etymology sources (e.g. Dauzat) explain it as a derogatory name applied by the French to the Normans and representing "by god." The English were known as goddamns 200 years later in Joan of Arc's France, and during World War I Americans serving in France were said to be known as les sommobiches (see also son of a bitch). But the sense development in bigot is difficult to explain. According to Donkin, the modern use first appears in French 16c. This and the earliest English sense, "religious hypocrite," especially a female one, might have been influenced by beguine and the words that cluster around it. Sense extended 1680s to other than religious opinions.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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