Dictionary.com

casus belli

[ key-suhs -bel-ahy, bel-ee; Latin kah-soos -bel-lee ]
/ ˈkeɪ səs ˈbɛl aɪ, ˈbɛl i; Latin ˈkɑ sʊs ˈbɛl li /
Save This Word!

noun, plural ca·sus bel·li [key-suhs -bel-ahy, bel-ee; Latin kah-soos -bel-lee]. /ˈkeɪ səs ˈbɛl aɪ, ˈbɛl i; Latin ˈkɑ sus ˈbɛl li/.

an event or political occurrence that brings about a declaration of war.

QUIZZES

THINK YOU’VE GOT A HANDLE ON THIS US STATE NICKNAME QUIZ?

Did you ever collect all those state quarters? Put them to good use on this quiz about curious state monikers and the facts around them.
Question 1 of 8
Mississippi’s nickname comes from the magnificent trees that grow there. What is it?

Origin of casus belli

1840–50; <New Latin: literally, occurrence of war

Words nearby casus belli

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for casus belli

British Dictionary definitions for casus belli

casus belli
/ Latin (ˈkɑːsʊs ˈbɛliː) /

noun plural casus belli (ˈkɑːsʊs ˈbɛliː)

an event or act used to justify a war
the immediate cause of a quarrel

Word Origin for casus belli

literally: occasion of war
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
Book Your Online Tutor Now