follow Dictionary.com

Is irregardless a word?

bête noire

[beyt nwahr; French bet nwar] /ˌbeɪt ˈnwɑr; French bɛt ˈnwar/
noun, plural bêtes noires
[beyt nwahrz; French bet nwar] /ˌbeɪt ˈnwɑrz; French bɛt ˈnwar/ (Show IPA)
1.
a person or thing especially disliked or dreaded; bane; bugbear.
Origin of bête noire
1835-1845
1835-45; < French: literally, black beast
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for bete noire
Historical Examples
  • The weather, being practically the bete noire of our existence, came in for a good deal of abuse.

    The Home of the Blizzard Douglas Mawson
  • It is a morbid desire to wear the skates on my feet that has always been my bete noire.

    Remarks Bill Nye
  • At last I lost my bete noire, and found a place close to the door with nothing but a low pile of logs in my front.

    Border and Bastille George A. Lawrence
  • It was a solution to her great difficulty, a loophole by which she might get rid of her bete noire, the hated Isabel.

    East Lynne Mrs. Henry Wood
  • Even the winter snows—forever its bete noire—did not discourage him, not for long, at any rate.

  • Bradwood, the rival, the bete noire of the banking-house of Mortimer & Co.

  • And at these words my post-boy started, and released me from my bete noire.

    Pelham, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
British Dictionary definitions for bete noire

bête noire

/bɛt nwar/
noun (pl) bêtes noires (bɛt nwar)
1.
a person or thing that one particularly dislikes or dreads
Word Origin
literally: black beast
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for bete noire
n.

"insufferable person," 1844, from French bête noire "personal aversion," as an adjective, "stupid, foolish;" literally "the black beast."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
bete noire in Culture
bête noire [(bet nwahr)]

Something or someone a person views with particular dislike: “The new candidate for governor is the bête noire of all the liberals in the state.” From French, meaning “black beast.”

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Idioms and Phrases with bete noire

bête noire

A person or thing that is particularly disliked. For example,
Calculus was the bête noire of my freshman courses
. This phrase, French for “black beast,” entered the English language in the early 1800s. For synonyms, see
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for bête noire

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for bete

0
0
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for bete noire