coup d'état

play
noun \ˌkü-(ˌ)dā-ˈtä, ˈkü-(ˌ)dā-ˌtä, -də-\
variants: or

coup d'etat

Definition of coup d'état

plural

coups d'état

or

coups d'etat

play \ˌkü-(ˌ)dā-ˈtä, ˈkü-(ˌ)dā-ˌtä, -də-\
  1. :  a sudden decisive exercise of force in politics; especially :  the violent overthrow or alteration of an existing government by a small group a military coup d'état of the dictator

Origin and Etymology of coup d'état

French, literally, stroke of state


First Known Use: 1646


COUP D'ÉTAT Defined for English Language Learners

coup d'état

play
noun \ˌkü-(ˌ)dā-ˈtä, ˈkü-(ˌ)dā-ˌtä, -də-\

Definition of coup d'état for English Language Learners

  • : a sudden attempt by a small group of people to take over the government usually through violence


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