Demi-monde, an expression first used by the younger Dumas in a drama of the same name (first performed in 1855) to denote that class of female adventurers who are only half-acknowledged in society; popularly, disreputable women; courtesans.

Entry from Everybody's Cyclopedia, 1912.

Dem`i*monde" (?), n. [F.; demi + monde world, L. mundus.]

Persons of doubtful reputation; esp., women who are kept as mistresses, though not public prostitutes; demireps.

Literary demimonde, writers of the lowest kind.


© Webster 1913.

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