passe par touts


[pas-pahr-too; French pahs-par-too]
noun, plural passe-partouts [pas-pahr-tooz; French pahs-par-too] .
something that passes everywhere or provides a universal means of passage.
a master key; skeleton key.
an ornamental mat for a picture.
a method of framing in which a piece of glass is placed over a picture and is affixed to a backing by means of adhesive strips of paper or other material pasted over the edges.
paper prepared for this purpose.

1635–45; < French: literally, (it) passes everywhere Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
passe-partout (ˌpæspɑːˈtuː, French pɑspartu)
1.  a mounting for a picture in which strips of strong gummed paper are used to bind together the glass, picture, and backing
2.  the gummed paper used for this
3.  a mat, often decorated, on which a picture is mounted
4.  something that secures entry everywhere, esp a master key
[C17: from French, literally: pass everywhere]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

"master-key," 1675, from Fr., lit. "pass everywhere," from passer "to pass" (see pass (v.)) + partout "everywhere," from par "through" + tout "all."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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