coup

noun
\ˈkü \
plural coups\ ˈküz \

Definition of coup 

(Entry 1 of 2)

2 : a brilliant, sudden, and usually highly successful stroke or act She pulled off quite a coup when she snagged the usually reclusive author for an interview.

coup

verb
\ˈkōp \
couped; couping; coups

Definition of coup (Entry 2 of 2)

chiefly Scotland

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Synonyms & Antonyms for coup

Synonyms: Noun

accomplishment, achievement, acquirement, attainment, baby, success, triumph

Antonyms: Noun

nonachievement

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Examples of coup in a Sentence

Noun

It was a major coup when they got the Vice President to appear on their show for an interview. winning that big contract was a real coup

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

After years of reputational decline because of an army coup in 2014 — one of a dozen successful putsches since the country abolished an absolute monarchy in 1932 — Thailand’s military has been handed an opportunity to burnish its image. Hannah Beech, The Seattle Times, "For some Thai soccer-team members, cave ordeal was only their latest test," 10 July 2018 After years of reputational decline because of an army coup in 2014 — one of a dozen successful putsches since the country abolished an absolute monarchy in 1932 — Thailand’s military has been handed an opportunity to burnish its image. Hannah Beech, New York Times, "Stateless and Poor, Some Boys in Thai Cave Had Already Beaten Long Odds," 10 July 2018 His first ended in resignation from military pressure in the early 1990s; his second ended in an army coup in the late 1990s. Renae Reints, Fortune, "Former Pakistani Prime Minister Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison," 6 July 2018 While recovering a piece of meteorite from hundreds of feet under the waves would be a scientific coup in and of itself, this meteorite could yield useful data if researchers can determine its composition. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "A Research Ship Is Hunting Meteorite Fragments Off the Coast of Washington," 4 July 2018 With Venezuela, efforts to initiate dialogue have been replaced by White House officials’ veiled calls for a military coup. Jon Lee Anderson, The New Yorker, "The Diplomat Who Quit the Trump Administration," 19 May 2018 There were a handful of references to the events that led to Gilead’s repressive dictatorship—a sudden plague of infertility in the U.S., the emergence of a Christian reconstructionist movement that staged a military coup. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "The Handmaid's Tale and the Suffering of Women," 25 Apr. 2018 The Midlands side have already pulled off a number of superb transfer coups in the past 12 months with the arrivals of stars such as Ruben Neves, Diogo Jota and Helder Costa. SI.com, "Wolves in 3-Way Fight to Land Milan Flop Andre Silva Amid San Siro Departure Rumours," 6 Mar. 2018 The opening sequence sets up a coup d’etat within the American government, led by its vice president, that robs President Wilson of his power. Nick Statt, The Verge, "How a tweet brought mecha cult classic Metal Wolf Chaos back to life 15 years later," 14 June 2018

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

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First Known Use of coup

Noun

1791, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Verb

circa 1572, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for coup

Noun

French, blow, stroke — more at cope entry 1

Verb

Middle English, to strike, from Anglo-French couper — more at cope entry 1

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Statistics for coup

Last Updated

10 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for coup

The first known use of coup was circa 1572

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More Definitions for coup

coup

noun

English Language Learners Definition of coup

: an impressive victory or achievement that usually is difficult or unexpected

coup

noun
\ˈkü \

Medical Definition of coup 

: injury occurring on the side of an organ (as the brain) on which a blow or impact is received — compare contrecoup

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Comments on coup

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