Definition of tu quoque
: a retort charging an adversary with being or doing what he criticizes in others
tu quoque was our Word of the Day on 11/24/2010. Hear the podcast!
Did You Know?
A typical tu quoque involves charging your accuser with whatever it is you've just been accused of rather than refuting the truth of the accusation - an evasive strategy that may or may not meet with success. The term has been active in the English language for about 400 years and has been put to use by a number of English writers, including C.S. Lewis, who penned, "your condemnation of my taste is insolent; only manners deter me from a tu quoque." The term is Latin in origin and translates as "you too," although the translation "you're another" is sometimes used as well (as in our second example sentence). Tu quoque functions in English as a noun, but it's often used attributively to modify other nouns, as in a tu quoque argument.
Origin and Etymology of tu quoque
Latin, you too
First Known Use: 1614
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