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[seylz-pee-puh l] /ˈseɪlzˌpi pəl/
plural noun
people engaged in selling.
Origin of salespeople
1875-80, Americanism; sales + people


[seylz-pur-suh n] /ˈseɪlzˌpɜr sən/
a person who sells goods, services, etc.
1915-20; sales + person
Usage note
See -person. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for salespeople
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • And the several thousand salespeople in the huge store were slangily nicknamed "Peter Rolls's hands."

    Winnie Childs C. N. Williamson
  • She had vaguely heard that shopwalkers in England could make or break the salespeople.

    Winnie Childs C. N. Williamson
  • Very naturally, the merchants and the salespeople did not like this.

    The King's Cup-Bearer Amy Catherine Walton
  • In an instant she realized that the pads upon which salespeople did hasty sums must be called check books, anyhow in America.

    Winnie Childs C. N. Williamson
  • And then you can leave your salespeople to wait on all customers, giving you more time for real management—generalship.

    Analyzing Character Katherine M. H. Blackford and Arthur Newcomb
  • About hours—we close at the right time, but the salespeople are kept late, often very late, looking over stock.

    Winnie Childs C. N. Williamson
Word Origin and History for salespeople



1920, from genitive of sale + person.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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