j'accuse

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowing from French j'accuse, the title of an 1898 open letter from writer Emile Zola to the president of France during the Dreyfus Affair.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

j'accuse (plural j'accuses)

  1. An accusation, especially one made publicly. [from 19th c.]
    • 2009, Jack Balkin, The Guardian (online), 17 Mar 2009:
      It was a rare combination of circumstances that led Cramer to agree to sit still and listen to Stewart engage in his j'accuse.
    • 2011, Thomas Penn, Winter King, Penguin 2012, p. 369:
      Buried within Dudley's petition, then, was a veiled ‘j'accuse’.

Usage notes[edit]

As it is a loanword and not naturalized in English, j'accuse is typically italicized in print.

Synonyms[edit]

Related terms[edit]