English Dictionary

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plebiscite (ˈplɛbɪˌsaɪt Pronunciation for plebiscite ; -sɪt) 



  1. a direct vote by the electorate of a state, region, etc, on some question of usually national importance, such as union with another state or acceptance of a government programme
  2. any expression or determination of public opinion on some matter

See also


Derived Forms

plebiscitary (pləˈbɪsɪtərɪ Pronunciation for plebiscitary  adjective

Word Origin

C16: from Old French plēbiscite, from Latin plēbiscītum decree of the people, from plēbs the populace + scītum, from scīscere to decree, approve, from scīre to know

Example Sentences Including 'plebiscite'

After the occupation Hitler held a plebiscite in which nearly all Austrians approved Austria's inclusion in `Greater Germany".
Thackrah, J. R. Twentieth Century History - Basic Facts
City residents voted 64 % in favour of Vancouver's Olympic bid in a plebiscite Saturday.
Ottawa Sun (2003)
In August, after von Hindenburg's death, a plebiscite made Hitler the Chancellor.
Gaskin, Catherine The Ambassador's Women
Indonesian troops and their militia proxies went on a rampage after their side lost the plebiscite.
canada.com (2004)
On August 15, it is mounting massive functions to commemorate 50 years of the 1948 UN resolution calling for a plebiscite on Kashmir.
India Today (1998)
There is a basic dilemma at the heart of any attempt to win assent for the single currency in a plebiscite.
Times, Sunday Times (2001)
They also fear that a refusal to hold a plebiscite would intensify charges of arrogance against Mr Blair and the Government.
Times, Sunday Times (2004)


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