What does Bigot mean?

Bigot is a word of French origin, which refers to a person so indoctrinated into a creed, religious belief or philosophy, that they are prejudiced, intolerant and hostile toward every opinion, theory or idea that differs from theirs in any manner.

The old meaning of the term was a religious hypocrite, especially applied to females during medieval years.


What's the origin of Bigot?

The exact origin and etymology of the term is widely debated, as there are several traces that may be followed, but none of them present any solid evidence that may serve as a foundation for a conclusion.

Early accounts of the word arose in relation to the name of a people in southern Gaul, which led several researchers to the proposition that “bigot” comes from the word Visigoth, which mutated into its current form over the centuries.

In Old French, however the word “bigot” is typically used in relation to Normans, living in the northern areas of France. This is hypothesized to come from the alleged Germanic oath “bi God” that was said to be widely used among the Normans of France.

Surnames in Normandy also support this, as family names, like Bygott or Bigott are both found in the area.

Spread & Usage

How did Bigot spread?

The word entered the English language in its modern sense in the 1580’s and its meaning had expanded beyond religious situations a century later.

Today, “bigot” is a widely popular word, although there are lots of people both online and in real life, who throw it around without any concrete idea of what it actually means.

External resources

  • Urban Dictionary – Bigot

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