Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Coup, a French word meaning stroke, keeping its French pronunciation in English, and seldom employed except in phrases adopted bodily from French. Examples of its use are - coup d'etat, a sudden stroke of policy, such as that of Napoleon III. when he made himself Emperor; a coup d'oeil, a sudden comprehensive view, or the instantaneous optical effect of a scene; a coup de theatre, a stage trick; a coup de main, a sudden and unexpected attack which disconcerts an adversary by its suddenness.