cause célèbre

noun
cause cé·​lè·​bre | \ˌkȯz-sə-ˈleb, -ˈle-brə, ˌkōz-, -ˈlebrᵊ\
variants: or less commonly cause celebre
plural causes célèbres also causes celebres\ same  \

Definition of cause célèbre 

1 : a legal case that excites widespread interest

2 : a notorious person, thing, incident, or episode

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of cause célèbre in a Sentence

a cause célèbre from some reality TV show whose fame hadn't even lasted the proverbial 15 minutes

Recent Examples on the Web

McAdams case became cause celebre Many conservatives argue universities should have more latitude to fire tenured faculty, but this case played out differently. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Wisconsin Supreme Court sides with Marquette professor John McAdams in free speech case, orders university to reinstate him," 6 July 2018 Now, all of a sudden, this has become the cause celebre of the left. Fox News, "Former agent fires back at calls to abolish ICE," 30 June 2018 The Maldives' exiled former president Mohamed Nasheed has become an international cause celebre and was represented by Amal Clooney, the high-profile human rights lawyer married to actor George Clooney. Fredreka Schouten, USA TODAY, "Millions flow to fast-growing lobbying firms with ties to the Trump administration," 17 May 2018 Mill is a huge Sixers fan and his incarceration turned into a cause celebre. Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY, "Philadelphia rapper Meek Mill took a helicopter to Game 5 of the 76ers vs. Heat," 24 Apr. 2018 Mill’s incarceration has become a cause celebre, with celebrities offering their support and recent prison visits from New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, Philadelphia 76ers co-owner Michael Rubin and Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, a Democrat. Washington Post, "Prosecutor wants Meek Mill’s drug and gun convictions tossed," 16 Apr. 2018 The case has become something of a cause celebre for conservatives, who generally argue for giving universities more latitude to fire faculty and mock tenure. Karen Herzog, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Marquette University professor case before high court may be case of private vs. public," 19 Apr. 2018 Ibar has become a cause celebre in his father’s home country. Lisa Arthur, www.sun-sentinel.com, "Pablo," 17 Apr. 2018 Mill's incarceration has become a major cause celebre, with celebrities offering their support and recent prison visits from New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, Philadelphia 76ers co-owner Michael Rubin and Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney. Fox News, "Philadelphia DA wants Meek Mill conviction thrown out," 16 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cause célèbre.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of cause célèbre

1763, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cause célèbre

French, literally, celebrated case

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about cause célèbre

Share cause célèbre

Statistics for cause célèbre

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cause célèbre

The first known use of cause célèbre was in 1763

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for cause célèbre

cause célèbre

noun

English Language Learners Definition of cause célèbre

: a legal case or an event that a lot of people become interested in

More from Merriam-Webster on cause célèbre

See words that rhyme with cause célèbre

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cause célèbre

Comments on cause célèbre

What made you want to look up cause célèbre? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

by force of circumstances

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!