Snobs look down at their inferiors, but at one timesnobs looked up at their betters. The word snob, the ultimate origins of which are uncertain, is first found in 1781 in the sense shoemaker, cobbler,?a regional and informal usage. The word is recorded around 1796 in a slang usage particular to Cambridge University, "a townsman as opposed to a gownsman.?Both senses may have fed into the sense first found in 1831, " a member of the ordinary or lower classes.?Along with this sense went another (1838), "a person without proper breeding or taste.?From these two senses arose the sense first recorded in 1848, 揳 person who looks up to his or her social betters and tries to copy or associate with them.?We can see how this sense could blend into the other familiar sense, "one who looks down on those considered inferior"(1911).