Definition of parvenu in English:


Line breaks: par|venu
Pronunciation: /ˈpɑːvənuː
, -njuː/


often • derogatory
  • A person of humble origin who has gained wealth, influence, or celebrity: the political inexperience of a parvenu [as modifier]: cynical parvenu bureaucrats
    More example sentences
    • The others are parvenus and upstarts in comparison.
    • He presented himself as a supremely patrician figure, so different from the vulgar parvenues of the Thatcher cabinet.
    • And yet one often hears the bitterness of a displaced generation: ‘How many out of this avalanche of parvenus will stay the course?’
    upstart, social climber, arriviste, vulgarian; the nouveau riche, the new rich


early 19th century: from French, literally 'arrived', past participle of parvenir, from Latin pervenire 'come to, reach'.

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elaborate ornamentation of a vocal melody