Plebians were the lower class in early Rome, composed of small farmers and shopkeepers. The status of a Plebian was comparable to that of commoner in Europe, while the patricians were the Roman equivalent of nobility. Today, 'pleb' is used as an insult.
Social status was inherited in ancient Rome, although it was possible to ascend to patrician status by marriage, and in rare cases promotion.
They were excluded from political and cultural life. The Plebians fought for more rights and were granted the right to elect representatives called tribunes. The Plebians eventually gained total equality with the Patricians.