bon mot

(redirected from a bon mot)

bon mot

A clever or witty retort. Brett was teased quite often by his peers, but he always responded quickly with a bon mot, causing everyone to erupt into laughter.
See also: bon, mot
References in classic literature ?
The donjon of Vincennes was considered very unhealthy and Madame de Rambouillet had said that the room in which the Marechal Ornano and the Grand Prior de Vendome had died was worth its weight in arsenic -- a bon mot which had great success.
You need not hurry when the object is only to prevent my saying a bon mot, for there is not the least wit in my nature.
Such combinations were powerful: he would lovingly support a young architect or student who he would feel to be sincere and engaged, but he could waspishly send a bon mot out to a member of the audience who was leaving early.
Thierry Mugler tosses off a bon mot in the film about clothing's utility to the wearer to get laid, and Altman allows this bromide, with its vulgar directness, to linger in the film's rankness; yet Mugler is expressing mainly his own preoccupation with up-front sexuality.
When loosing a bon mot against politicians in The New York Review of Books or chortling his way through a review of the current vulgar best sellers, Gore Vidal is more intent on turning the arch phrase than on presenting an idea; political ideas, especially, are for him mere excuses to display his exquisite moves.
The other day there was a bon mot which said: "Failure begins when you stop trying to succeed", and that got me thinking.