[PW] ? Origin of "Epater le Bourgeois" (Quotation Query #738)

dillonbook at aol.com dillonbook at aol.com
Wed Feb 17 10:50:29 PST 2016


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•• 1860 
Alexandre Dumas (père) _Le père la ruine_ (Paris: Michel Lévy frères, 1860), page 186:

“ Mille sabords! mais pour vexer les lascars de _la Doris_, qui faisaient tant leurs gabiers avec leurs méchantes vareuses de futaine rouge, pour épater les bourgeois . . . . ”  


•• 1878 
Lucien Rigaud _Dictionnaire du jargon parisien: l’argot ancien et l’argot moderne_ (Paris: Paul Ollendorff, 1878), page 135: 

“ *Epater.* Etonner profondément. La prétention des artistes en 1830 était d’épater les bourgeois. ” 







Jay Dillon 

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-----Original Message-----
From: Shapiro, Fred <fred.shapiro at yale.edu>
To: list <list at project-wombat.org>
Sent: Tue, Feb 16, 2016 7:11 pm
Subject: [PW] ? Origin of "Epater le Bourgeois" (Quotation Query #738)

The expression "épater le bourgeois" or "épater la bourgeoisie" is vaguely attributed to Baudelaire and other 19th-century French literary figures.  Can anyone find concrete examples of early usage or early attribution of this phrase?

Fred Shapiro
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