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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Esprit \Es`prit"\, n. [F. See Spirit.] Spirit.

Esprit de corps, a French phrase much used by English writers to denote the common spirit pervading the members of a body or association of persons. It implies sympathy, enthusiasm, devotion, and jealous regard for the honor of the body as a whole.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1590s, "liveliness, wit, vivacity," from Middle French esprit "spirit, mind," from Old French espirit "spirit, soul" (12c.), from Latin spiritus "spirit" (see spirit (n.)). For initial e-, see e-.\n

\nEsprit de corps, recorded from 1780 in English, preserves the usual French sense. French also has the excellent phrase esprit de l'escalier, literally "spirit of the staircase," defined in OED as, "a retort or remark that occurs to a person after the opportunity to make it has passed." It also has espirit fort, a "strong-minded" person, one independent of current prejudices, especially a freethinker in religion.


n. 1 spirit, enthusiasm. 2 A wit. 3 liveliness, or active mind and spirit.


n. liveliness of mind or spirit


Esprit or L'Esprit may refer to:

  • Esprit (name), a name and persons with it
  • Esprit (magazine), a periodical
  • Lotus Esprit, a car
  • Esprit Holdings, a clothing manufacturer
  • Enthusiasm, intense interest
  • European Strategic Program on Research in Information Technology, a cooperative government program
  • Estimation of signal parameters via rotational invariance techniques, a signal processing method
  • L'esprit (In the Nursery album)
Esprit (magazine)

Esprit is a French literary magazine. The magazine also deals with current events.

Esprit (name)

Esprit is a surname and given name.

Usage examples of "esprit".

During this malady, they caused several masses to be said in different places, especially at St Maur des Fosses, at St Amable, and at St Esprit.

Le chanoine Trevoux quitta ce monde a quelque temps de la, laissant une histoire des saints de Bretagne qui atteste la purete de son ame et la simplicite de son esprit.

Yet Number Five has more esprit, more sparkle, more sense in her talk, than many a famous authoress from whom we should expect brilliant conversation.

After his visit I told Esprit to take me to the PalaisRoyal, and I left him at the gates.

Lorsque cette idee se fut presentee a son esprit, elle en chassa le mecontentement et la colere.

Occupent nos esprits et trauailknt nos corps, Et nous atimmtons nos amiabks remords, Comme ks mendiants nourrissent leur vermine.

Occupent nos esprits et travaillent nos corps, Et nous alimentons nos amiables remords, Comme les mendiants nourrissent leur vermine.

From virology to genetics and primate paleobiology, each of the specialties had its own esprit de corps, its own labs, its own pursuits.

Esprit, and important chiefly as fur-trading paths, there remains but one other historic portage path across the ridge of stone and swamp and prairie from which are pendent, on the one side, all the silver streams of the Mississippi Valley and, on the other side, all the Great Lakes and all the rivers that flow into them.

After his visit I told Esprit to take me to the PalaisRoyal, and I left him at the gates.

She was a goddaughter of old Mary Wortley Montagu: and, like that famous old woman of the last century, made considerable pretensions to be a blue-stocking and a bel esprit.

All Marines, in his opinion, had the kind of esprit de corps and impeccable discipline that the Finns he so admired in combat had possessed.

There were a lot of reasons why the Greek campaign was a fiasco, but one of them was that personnel were moved around so much that there was no possibility of developing any esprit de corps.

And that officers are transferred with great frequency and enlisted men with considerable frequency and you have a situation in which esprit de corps cannot be developed (an outfit without esprit de corps is not an army unit.

Nevertheless, the army's heavy divisions (its six armored and mechanized divisions) retain a strong sense of professionalism and a corresponding esprit de corps.