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lettre de cachet

[le-truh duh ka-she] /lɛ trə də kaˈʃɛ/
noun, plural lettres de cachet
[le-truh duh ka-she] /lɛ trə də kaˈʃɛ/ (Show IPA).
French.
1.
a letter under the seal of the sovereign, especially one ordering imprisonment, frequently without trial.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for lettre de cachet
Historical Examples
  • He offered me her life while he refused me a lettre de cachet!

    The Golden Dog William Kirby
  • He would not grant me the lettre de cachet nor keep his promise for her removal.

    The Golden Dog William Kirby
  • I was astonished, indeed, when I received the lettre de cachet.

    Richelieu, v. 2/3 G. P. R. James
  • He got a lettre de cachet in the name of that unhappy Quonion.

    The Queen Pedauque Anatole France
  • Yes; and so much so that they procured a lettre de cachet against an ecclesiastic for calling them monks.

    A Philosophical Dictionary, Volume 6 (of 10) Franois-Marie Arouet (AKA Voltaire)
  • Bentham defines the "lettre de cachet" as "an order to punish, without any proof, for a fact against which there is no law."

    A History of Police in England W. L. Melville Lee
  • When Louvois had finished writing, Courtin, with some emotion, asked him what that lettre de cachet was?

    Political Women, Vol. 2 (of 2) Sutherland Menzies
  • There was no difficulty in obtaining this lettre de cachet, and the poor wretch was arrested and taken to the Bastille.

    Queens of the French Stage H. Noel Williams
  • He had effected his escape none too soon, for the very next day (June 10, 1749), a lettre de cachet for his arrest was issued.

    Queens of the French Stage H. Noel Williams
  • I have seen the lettre de cachet; it is my father who has caused me to be placed here.

    Queens of the French Stage H. Noel Williams
British Dictionary definitions for lettre de cachet

lettre de cachet

/lɛtrə də kaʃɛ/
noun (pl) lettres de cachet (lɛtrə də kaʃɛ)
1.
(French history) a letter under the sovereign's seal, often authorizing imprisonment without trial
Word Origin
literally: letter with a seal
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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