coup de grâce

(redirected from coups de grace)

coup de grâce

An action or event that brings a swift end to suffering or a worsening situation. The phrase is French for "blow of mercy." The samurai delivered a merciful coup de grâce to his mortally wounded enemy. The large class action lawsuit was the coup de grâce that caused the failing company to finally go out of business.
See also: coup, DE, grace
References in periodicals archive ?
Half of these turn out to be red herrings, and the coups de grace often come out of totally unexpected directions.
Two recent Broadway musicals may be similarly doomed, and I will again defer to another critic, Frank Rich of The Times, who administered just the coups de grace I thought they had coming.