je ne sais quoi


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je ne sais quoi

A positive or pleasant quality that is difficult to define. This French phrase translates to "I don't know what" in English. She had a certain je ne sais quoi that men found quite attractive.
See also: Ne

ˌje ne sais ˈquoi

/%Z@ n@ seI "kwA:/ (from French, often humorous) a good quality that is difficult to describe: He has that je ne sais quoi that distinguishes a professional from an amateur.It has a certain je ne sais quoi that really appeals to me.
The meaning of the French phrase is ‘I do not know what’.
See also: Ne
References in periodicals archive ?
Children, if given dancing, fencing and riding lessons, and if constantly corrected in their posture, bearing and gesticulations, indeed even facial expressions, will learn to carry themselves with the je ne sais quoi that will mark them out for all to see as members of a social elite.
Inevitably with such a wide-ranging topic, some readers will be disappointed not to find detailed analysis of prominent examples of the term, such as Bossuet's description of the body after death as 'un je ne sais quoi qui n'a plus de nom dans aucune langue' ('Sermon sur la Mort': Scholar chooses not to consider this because of its idiosyncratic use, which does not conform to his semantic ideal type).
Washington, there may be a certain je ne sais quoi to having Susan Sarandon grace your fundraiser, but Hollywood is small potatoes when it comes to the economic well-being of the typical American voter.
Like high school French Club presidents who pompously describe the day's cafeteria offerings as lacking "a certain je ne sais quoi," such people can't stop talking about how magnifique it would be if the United States got in line with the Continent on everything from government-mandated maternity leave to long, winesoaked luchesn.
The Model 41 is too expensive in today's market, and their Sport series of plinkers just doesn't have that je ne sais quoi like the Ruger Mk.
Both the flicks and the patrons possess a certain bohemian je ne sais quoi.
Some notes in Japoneries d'automne stand out particularly: 'Passons vite, tout cela sent la race jaune, la moisissure et la mort;" 'Et puis ces odeurs de race jaune, de cuisine au riz, de musc, de je ne sais quoi, vous ecoeurent' (p.
je ne sais quoi, a part of his personality that took the students, and they seemingly never, never forgot him.
Suited for royalty yet affordable, gold bowls and plates by L'Objet and tea cups by Villari add a certain je ne sais quoi to any table.
TEACHERS at a Tyneside school set their pupils some homework with a little je ne sais quoi.
Follow Maddie as she cooks her way to the top with her invincible determination and spicy je ne sais quoi.
she] something special about her: a je ne sais quoi.
A family picnic without the need to excavate four tonnes of pebbles first is one that lacks a certain je ne sais quoi.
Well, obviously Renault Gaviscon hasn't got much of ring to it and as we Brits are still in a love-love relationship with convertibles it was important to capture the je ne sais quoi of breezy open-top motoring.