cui bono

cui bo·​no | \ ˈkwē-ˈbō-(ˌ)nō How to pronounce cui bono (audio) \

Definition of cui bono

1 : a principle that probable responsibility for an act or event lies with one having something to gain
2 : usefulness or utility as a principle in estimating the value of an act or policy

Examples of cui bono in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web For the many who embrace climate change as a progressive cause, watch in the coming years for who benefits, cui bono. William Levin, National Review, "We Have Time to Prevent Climate Change," 15 Dec. 2020 The question that underlies the nocturnal ritual fantasy is cui bono? Talia Lavin, The New Republic, "QAnon, Blood Libel, and the Satanic Panic," 29 Sep. 2020

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

First Known Use of cui bono

1604, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cui bono

Latin, to whose advantage?

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The first known use of cui bono was in 1604

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Cite this Entry

“Cui bono.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Mar. 2021.

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