politesse

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See also: Politesse

English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From French politesse, from Italian politezza, from polito, past participle of pulire (to clean), from Latin polire, present active infinite form of poliō (I polish).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

politesse (countable and uncountable, plural politesses)

  1. Civility, politeness, courtesy or gallantry; or an instance of this.
    • 1968, Keith Richards, Mick Jagger (lyrics and music), “Sympathy for the Devil”, in Beggars Banquet, performed by Rolling Stones:
      So if you meet me, have some courtesy / Have some sympathy, and some taste / Use all your well-learned politesse / Or I'll lay your soul to waste
    • 1978, Iris Murdoch, The Sea, The Sea, Vintage, published 1999, pages 56-57:
      The reference in his letter to ‘having a drink’ is of course just an empty politesse.
    • 2011, Thomas Penn, Winter King, Penguin, published 2012, page 7:
      The soft politesse concealed a sharp observer, a gleaner of information, cool under pressure and used to having to think several steps ahead []

Translations[edit]


French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from Italian politezza.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /pɔ.li.tɛs/
  • (file)

Noun[edit]

politesse f (plural politesses)

  1. politeness, courtesy
    Antonym: impolitesse
  2. polite remark/action

Related terms[edit]

Descendants[edit]

  • English: politesse

Further reading[edit]