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eminence grise

Definition of the noun eminence grise

What does eminence grise mean as a name of something?


  1. (French) a person who exercises power or influence in certain areas without holding an official position
    • example: the President's wife is an eminence grise in matters of education
    • usage: French
    • lexical domain: People - nouns denoting people
    • more generic terms: important person / influential person / personage = a person whose actions and opinions strongly influence the course of events


Eminence Grise a.k.a. Éminence grise: An éminence grise is a powerful decision-maker or advisor who operates "behind the scenes" or in a non-public or unofficial capacity.

  • also known as L'eminence grise

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for eminence grise

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Google previewThe Wordsworth Dictionary of Idioms (1993)

by Elizabeth McLaren Kirkpatrick, C. M. Schwarz

[From the French Eminence Grise — 'the cardinal in grey' — the nickname given to Cardinal Richelieu's secretary and adviser, Pere Joseph, who was a Capuchin friar and wore a grey habit.] grief come to grief to be unsuccessful, suffer some ...

Google previewHistorical Dictionary of France (2008)

by Gino Raymond

The term eminence grise (grey eminence) was originally coined to refer to Richelieu's secretary, Pere Joseph. RIF WAR (1925—1926). Rebellion in Morocco that began as armed resistance to the Spanish army by the Berber mountain tribes in ...

Google previewThe Doubleday Roget's Thesaurus in Dictionary Form (2009)

by Sidney L. Landau

senior, veteran, elder statesman, grand old man, leader, doyen, first, foremost, elder, chief, eminence grise, big wheel (Slang). dear adj.

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eminence grise

Bob - Eminence Grise

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