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cherchez la femme

[sher-shey la-fam] /ʃɛrˈʃeɪ laˈfam/
look for the woman: advice offered facetiously in any situation, especially one of doubt or mystery. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Word Origin and History for cherchez-la-femme

cherchez la femme

French, literally "seek the woman," on the notion that a woman is the cause for whatever crime has been committed, first used by Alexandre Dumas père in "Les Mohicans de Paris" (1864) in the form cherchons la femme. French chercher is from Latin circare, in Late Latin "to wander hither and thither," from circus "circle" (see circus).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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