• synonyms


[sav-wahr-vee-vruh, -veev; French sa-vwar-vee-vruh]
  1. knowledge of the world and the ways or usages of polite society.
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Origin of savoir-vivre

1745–55; < French: literally, knowing how to live
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for savoir-vivre

Historical Examples of savoir-vivre

  • He is a Jesuit by his garb; he is much more so than they are by his 'savoir-vivre'.

    The Memoirs of Madame de Montespan, Complete

    Madame La Marquise De Montespan

  • Respect for others is the first condition of 45 "savoir-vivre."

  • Kindness is the principle of tact, and respect for others the condition of 'savoir-vivre.'

  • In Glasgow, show your savoir-faire; but, in Edinburgh and Aberdeen, your savoir-vivre.

  • Kindness is the principle of tact, and respect for others the first condition of savoir-vivre.

    Amiel's Journal

    Henri-Frdric Amiel

British Dictionary definitions for savoir-vivre


  1. familiarity with the customs of good society; breeding
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Word Origin for savoir-vivre

French, literally: a knowing how to live
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