What does raison d'etre mean?

Definitions for raison d'etre
ˈreɪ zoʊn ˈdɛ trə, ˈrɛz ɔ̃; ˈreɪ zoʊnz ˈdɛ trə, ˈrɛz ɔ̃rai·son d'etre

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word raison d'etre.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. raison d'etrenoun

    reason for being

  2. raison d'etrenoun

    the purpose that justifies a thing's existence


  1. raison d'etre

    Raison d'être is a French phrase that translates to "reason for being" in English. It is used to refer to the most important reason or purpose for an individual's, institution's, or object's existence. It can also be interpreted as the fundamental or central aspect, purpose, or function of something or someone. It is generally used in philosophical or existential discussions.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Raison d'être

    rā-zong′ dā′tr, n. reason or excuse for being: rational ground for existence.—adj. Raisonné (rā-zo-nā′), reasoned out, systematic, as in 'catalogue raisonné.' [Fr. raison, reason, de, of, être, to be.]

Suggested Resources

  1. raison d'etre

    Song lyrics by raison d'etre -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by raison d'etre on the Lyrics.com website.

  2. raison d'etre

    Read the full text of the Raison D'Etre poem by Edith Nesbit on the Poetry.com website.

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How to pronounce raison d'etre?

How to say raison d'etre in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of raison d'etre in Chaldean Numerology is: 3

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of raison d'etre in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Examples of raison d'etre in a Sentence

  1. Werner Baumann:

    Synergies per se are no raison d'etre for organizational structures and businesses.

  2. Ruslan Pukhov:

    Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, NATO has been searching for a raison d’être ... Now NATO, and especially (the) military staff, are relieved that they can return to the good old times.

  3. Jo M. Sekimonyo:

    In the 21st century, the double standard approach to rewarding moneyers and laborers has lost its raison d'être. No one should receive a salary; we should all get a percentage of the profits.

Translations for raison d'etre

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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    come up with (an idea, plan, explanation, theory, or principle) after a mental effort
    • A. descant
    • B. excogitate
    • C. fluster
    • D. huff

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