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[em-i-grey; French ey-mee-grey] /ˈɛm ɪˌgreɪ; French eɪ miˈgreɪ/
noun, plural émigrés
[em-i-greyz; French ey-mee-grey] /ˈɛm ɪˌgreɪz; French eɪ miˈgreɪ/ (Show IPA)
an emigrant, especially a person who flees from his or her native land because of political conditions.
a person who fled from France because of opposition to or fear of the revolution that began in 1789.
Origin of émigré
1785-95; < French: noun use of past participle of émigrer < Latin ēmīgrāre to emigrate Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for emigres
Historical Examples
  • He was all-powerful in Montaignac; and I was accused of being in correspondence with the emigres.

    The Honor of the Name Emile Gaboriau
  • The marquis and his family had been among the first emigres at the outbreak of the Revolution.

    Lucretia, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • Fouche relied on the co-operation of the emigres everywhere beyond the Rhine to lure the Duc d'Enghien into the plot.

    An Historical Mystery Honore de Balzac
  • The priests had followed the "emigres" into their long exile.

    The Story of Mankind Hendrik van Loon
  • I confine myself to emigres—these damned aristocrats whom it is every good Frenchman's duty to aid in stamping out.

    The Trampling of the Lilies Rafael Sabatini
  • He removed their names from the list of emigres, though they certainly took part in that last conspiracy against him.

    An Historical Mystery Honore de Balzac
  • To the best of my knowledge, all or certainly nearly all were emigres.

    Warren Commission (9 of 26): Hearings Vol. IX (of 15) The President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy
  • Ah, you conversed about this favorite theme of the emigres, about the restoration question!

  • Madame de Ventadour had been in England in her childhood, for her parents had been emigres.

    Ernest Maltravers, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • He was too well informed not to be able to distinguish between the hopes of the emigres and the possible.

    The Honor of the Name Emile Gaboriau
British Dictionary definitions for emigres


/ˈɛmɪˌɡreɪ; French emiɡre/
an emigrant, esp one forced to leave his native country for political reasons
Word Origin
C18: from French, from émigrer to emigrate
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for emigres



1792, from French émigré "an emigrant," noun use of past participle of émigrer "emigrate" (18c.), from Latin emigrare (see emigration). Originally used of royalist refugees from the French Revolution; extended 1920s to refugees from the Russian Revolution, then generally to political exiles.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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