impasse

impasse

[im-pas, im-pas]
noun
1.
a position or situation from which there is no escape; deadlock.
2.
a road or way that has no outlet; cul-de-sac.

Origin:
1850–55; < French, equivalent to im- im-2 + -passe, stem of passer to pass


1. stalemate, standstill, standoff, dead end.
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World English Dictionary
impasse (æmˈpɑːs, ˈæmpɑːs, ɪmˈpɑːs, ˈɪmpɑːs)
 
n
a situation in which progress is blocked; an insurmountable difficulty; stalemate; deadlock
 
[C19: from French; see im-, pass]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

impasse
1851, from Fr. impasse "impassable road, blind alley, impasse," from in- "not" + M.Fr. passe "a passing," from passer "to pass." Supposedly coined by Voltaire as a euphemism for cul de sac.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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