Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The sudden overthrow of a government, differing from a revolution by being carried out by a small group of people who replace only the leading figures.

Etymologies

Borrowing from French coup d'état (literally "stroke of state"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Bonaparte's lieutenant, to carry out the coup d'état of 18 Fructidor against the Councils (4 Sept., 1797), and France was once more a prey to a Jacobin and anti-Catholic policy.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 10: Mass Music-Newman

  • King Michael of Rumania had been in touch both with the CIA and with the Russian Legation in Turkey, and made preparations for a coup d'état which was to be followed by the "internment" of the troops of his erstwhile ally: he awaited only the signal, which was to be the passage of the Dniester by Tolbukhin.

    Barbarossa

  • Treuer Heinrich — the cognomen had been bestowed on him by Hitler personally in recognition of his perfect loyalty — had at his command the most perfect machinery for a coup d'état that has ever existed, in the police, the Gestapo, the SD, and the SS.

    Barbarossa

Comments

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  • The sudden overthrow of a government. (from WordCraft)

    May 20, 2008