Definition of douceur
: a conciliatory gift
Did You Know?
In French, douceur means "pleasantness," and it is often used in phrases such as "douceur de vivre" ("the pleasure of life"). The word derives from the Latin adjective dulcis, meaning "sweet." A douceur is a gift or payment - sometimes, but not necessarily, considered a bribe - provided by someone to enhance or "sweeten" a deal. In the United Kingdom, "douceur" specifically refers to a tax benefit given to someone who sells a historical artifact to a public collection. Other sweet treats that "dulcis" has given to our language include "dulcet" (having a "sweet" sound that is pleasing to the ear) and "dulcimer" (a kind of stringed instrument that provides "sweet" music).
Origin and Etymology of douceur
French, pleasantness, from Late Latin dulcor sweetness, from Latin dulcis
First Known Use: 1763
Learn More about douceur
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up douceur? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).