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illustration Repartee



Part of speech: noun

Origin: French, 17th century


Conversation or speech characterized by quick, witty comments or replies.

Examples of Repartee in a sentence

"The mixture of guests from different social circles always ensures entertaining repartee at Alex’s cocktail parties."

"Kevin would rather see a movie where the action is in the repartee rather than on-screen fighting."

About Repartee

“Repartee” is based on the French “repartie,” meaning “retort.”

Did you Know?

“Repartee” is one of the French words borrowed in the 17th century to describe fashionable things in English. In a time before radio, television, internet, or even stand-up comedians, witty repartee — or clever and funny conversation — was one of the great pleasures in life. However, the English words for what was known commonly as “good talk” — such as “banter” or “wordplay” — didn’t sound as hip to 17th-century ears as the continental “repartee.”

illustration Repartee

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