Definition of kaput
1 : utterly finished, defeated, or destroyed Their marriage is kaput.
2 : unable to function The refrigerator is kaput. —often used with go The engine suddenly went kaput.
3 : hopelessly outmoded
kaput was our Word of the Day on 11/09/2012. Hear the podcast!
Examples of kaput in a sentence
once the Germans were forced to retreat from Stalingrad, the Nazi cause was kaput
hard-line Soviet-style Communism became kaput in Russia
Did You Know?
Kaput originated with a card game called piquet that has been popular in France for centuries. French players originally used the term "capot" to describe both big winners and big losers. To win all twelve tricks in a hand was called "faire capot" ("to make capot"), but to lose them all was known as "être capot" ("to be capot"). German speakers adopted "capot," but respelled it "kaputt," and used it only for losers. When English speakers borrowed the word from German, they started using "kaput" for things that were broken, useless, or destroyed.
Origin and Etymology of kaput
German kaputt, from French capot not having made a trick at piquet
First Known Use: 1895
KAPUT Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of kaput for English Language Learners
: no longer working
: no longer able to continue : completely ruined or defeated
Seen and Heard
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