"act or fact of being reduced to a lower rank or class," 1890, noun of action from demote (v.).
"of or characteristic of the lower class or the common people," 1560s in a Roman historical sense, from Latin plebeius "belonging to the plebs," earlier plebes, "the populace, the common people" (as opposed to patricians, etc.), also "commonality; the mass, the multitude; the lower class" (from PIE *ple-, from root *pele- (1) "to fill"). In general (non-historical) use from 1580s.
"to stew in a closed pan with heat from above and below," 1797, braze, from French braiser "to stew, cook over live coals" (17c.), from braise "live coals," from Old French brese "embers" (12c.), ultimately (along with Italian bragia, Spanish brasa) from Proto-Germanic *brasa, from PIE root *bhreu- "to boil, bubble, effervesce, burn." Related: Braised; braising.
1650s (n.) "member of the lowest or poorest class of a community;" 1660s (adj.) "of or belonging to the lowest class of people," hence "mean, vile, vulgar;" with -ian + Latin proletarius "citizen of the lowest class" (as an adjective, "relating to offspring"), from proles "offspring, progeny" (see prolific). In ancient Rome, according to the traditional division of the state, the proletarius was one of the propertyless people, exempted from taxes and military service, who served the state only by having children. The modern political sense of proletarian is by 1851.
"the intellectual class collectively," 1905, from Russian intelligyentsiya, from Latin intelligentia "intelligence" (see intelligence). Perhaps via Italian intelligenzia.
1580s, as a class of preachers, agent noun from lecture (v.). From 1610s as "one who gives formal lectures."
adjectival word-forming element, especially in zoology, "belonging to, connected with, member of a group or class," in some cases probably via from French -ide, back-formed from Modern Latin names of zoological classes in -idae, as arachnid "a spider" from the biological class name arachnidae.
This -idae is the plural of Latin -ides, a masculine patronymic (indicating "descent from"), from Greek -ides "son of," denoting descent from the person to whose name it is attached (such as Heraklides).
In astronomy, of meteor showers, "having its radiant in" the constellation named (Perseid, Leonid, etc.), it probably represents Latin -idis, from Greek -idos, the genitive of the feminine form of the patronymic suffix.
"government by the wealthy class; a class ruling by virtue of wealth," 1650s, from Greek ploutokratia "rule or power of the wealthy or of wealth," from ploutos "wealth" (see Pluto) + -kratia "rule" (see -cracy). Synonym plutarchy is slightly older (1640s). Pluto-democracy "plutocracy masquerading as democracy" is from 1895.
mid-13c., from sun (n.) + shine (n.). Old English had sunnanscima "sunshine;" while sunscin meant "a mirror, speculum." Meaning "happy person who brightens the lives of others" is from 1942. Sunshine law in reference to U.S. open-meeting legislation is recorded from 1972, from the notion of shining the light of public access on deliberations formerly held behind closed doors. Related: Sunshiny.