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October 16, 2021

Spartan /ˈspärtn / adj. 

Definition: Showing indifference to comfort or luxury traditionally associated with the ancient Greek city-state Sparta.

Etymology:  The etymology of the word spartan is fairly straightforward. Spartan entered the English language in the 1500s through the Latin Spartanus, and it originally denoted a citizen of the ancient Greek city of Sparta.

By the middle of the seventeenth century, it had come to have its current definition of indifference or ignorance to comfort and luxury. The real world citizens of Sparta were historically associated with a bare bones lifestyle that did not prioritize material goods or comfort, which is how “spartan” came to have its English definition.

In a Sentence

Susan’s room was completely bare of any unnecessary decorations, so her friends often described her as spartan.

Because the monks had dedicated themselves to a spartan lifestyle, the monastery had little in the way of comfort or excess.

Due to her spartan diet, Maria chose to eat only bland, unseasoned food while her family had a sumptuous dinner party.


Frugal, Stringent, Austere


Opulent, Excessive


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