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Thread: Where did the word "chauvinism" come from?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Alberta, Canada

    Where did the word "chauvinism" come from?

    Got this in my Quote of the Day today - interesting!

    Did you know...

    ... that today is Chauvin Day? This day honors Nicholas Chauvin, a soldier so blindly devoted to Emperor Napoleon that his name became a word: "chauvinism," which in its original and primary meaning, is an exaggerated, bellicose patriotism and a belligerent belief in national superiority and glory. Napoleon was born on this date in 1769.
    "To begin, begin." ~William Wordsworth

  2. #2
    Close, but Chauvin was a character in a French play, not a real person.

    If it was a soldier who inspired the word, it should be neyist, after the marshal who turned his coat on the restored Bourbon monarchy and joined Napoleon after stating that "Napoleon should be brought to Paris in an iron cage".

    (This lead to one of the more amusing events in the Napoleonic wars: After King Louis sent Marshal Ney to arrest Napoleon and Ney switched sides with his troops, some wiseacre posted a note to King Louis in the Place de la Concorde in Paris: Please, there is no need to send any more troops, I already have enough.")

    There are many, many interesting stories from that period in history, as there should be, as Napoleon's brief empire helped draw the map of modern Europe.
    Last edited by Lady's Human; 08-15-2013 at 02:06 PM.
    The one eyed man in the kingdom of the blind wasn't king, he was stoned for seeing light.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Waltham, MA, USA
    Thanks for the history lessons! Didn't know that one!
    I've Been Frosted


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