- An example of a Philistine is someone who lived in ancient Philistia and continually was at war with the Islaelites.
- An example of a philistine is someone who doesn't want his money used to support a local symphony orchestra.
- a member of a non-Semitic people that lived in Philistia and repeatedly warred with the Israelites
Origin of Philistineadapted < Ger Philister, orig. student slang for townspeople a person regarded as smugly narrow and conventional in views and tastes, lacking in and indifferent to cultural and aesthetic values
Origin of PhilistineMiddle English ; from Ecclesiastical Late Latin Philistinus, usually plural Philistini ; from Late Greek (Josephus) philistinoi ; from Classical Hebrew (language) pelishtim; akin to Palestine
- of the ancient Philistines or their culture
- smugly conventional and lacking in culture
- A member of a people, perhaps of Aegean origin, who settled ancient Philistia around the 12th century BC.
- often philistine A person who is smugly indifferent or hostile to art and culture.
- Of or relating to ancient Philistia.
- often philistine Relating to or having the attitudes of a philistine: “our plastic, violent culture, with its philistine tastes and hunger for novelty” (Lloyd Rose).
Origin of PhilistineFrom Middle English Philistines, Philistines, from Late Latin Philist&imacron;n&imacron;, from Greek Philist&imacron;noi, from Hebrew P&schwa;lištîm, from P&schwa;lešet, Philistia. Word History: The ultimate origin of the Philistines, the inhabitants of the ancient city-states of Philistia (located in what is now the Gaza Strip and the southern Mediterranean coast of Israel), is not known, although some archaeological evidence links them with ancient peoples of the Aegean region and Anatolia. The English name of this people, the Philistines, ultimately comes from Hebrew P&schwa;lištîm, which is in turn derived from P&schwa;lešet, the Hebrew name for Philistia. In fact, the word Palestine, the more recent historical designation for the entire region between Lebanon and Egypt, also derives from the ancient name of Philistia. Strategically located on a trade route from Egypt to Syria, the cities of Philistia formed a loose confederacy important in biblical times, and the Bible depicts the Philistines as engaged in a struggle with the tribes of Israel for ascendancy in the region. The mighty Israelite warrior Samson, for example, fought with the Philistines on several occasions and was betrayed by his Philistine lover, Delilah. During the 1600s, as a result of the negative depiction of the Philistines in the Bible, the word philistine came to be applied figuratively to anyone considered an enemy. However, the modern sense of the word, “uncultured person,” stems from the slang of German university students in the 1600s. Students used Philister, the German equivalent of the English word Philistine, to refer to nonstudents and hence uncultured or materialistic people. At a memorial service in 1693 for a student killed during a town-gown quarrel in Jena, for example, a minister preached a sermon from the text “Philister &udie;ber dir Simson!” (“The Philistines be upon thee, Samson!”)—the words of Delilah to Samson after she attempted to render him powerless before the Philistines. The German usage was eventually picked up in English in the early 1800s.
(comparative more philistine, superlative most philistine)
- Alternative capitalization of Philistine
(comparative more Philistine, superlative most Philistine)
- Of or pertaining to the ancient Philistines.
- Lacking appreciation of culture; also philistine.
From Late Latin Philistinus, from Late Ancient Greek Î¦Ï…Î»Î¹ÏƒÏ„á¿–Î½Î¿Î¹ (Phulistinoi), from Hebrew ×¤Ö°Ö¼×œÖ´×©Ö°××ªÖ´Ö¼×™× (p'lishtÃm), from ×¤Ö°Ö¼×œÖ¶×©Ö¶××ª (p'lÃ©shet, “Philistia").
The sense relating to lack of education and culture was introduced to English by Thomas Carlyle and greatly popularised by Matthew Arnold. It is derived from German student use of the term Philister to refer to the burghers of the town. This apparently derived from the use of the biblical text "the Philistines be upon you, Samson" in a memorial service for a Jena university student who died as the result of a town vs. gown dispute in 1693.