coup Definition

a sudden, violent, and illegal seizure of power from a government.

Using coup: Examples

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how "coup" can be used in various situations through the following examples!

  • Example

    The military staged a coup and overthrew the government.

  • Example

    The rebels attempted a coup but failed.

  • Example

    The president was ousted in a bloodless coup.

  • Example

    The coup resulted in a change of leadership.

coup Synonyms and Antonyms

Synonyms for coup

Antonyms for coup

Idioms Using coup

  • to achieve something difficult or unexpected


    The team pulled off a coup by winning the championship against all odds.

  • a significant achievement or success for someone


    The promotion was a coup for her career.

  • a sudden and unexpected stroke of good luck


    Winning the lottery was a coup of fortune for him.

Phrases with coup

  • coup d'état

    a sudden and decisive action in politics, especially one resulting in a change of government illegally or by force


    The country's history is marked by several coups d'état.

  • coup de grâce

    a final blow or shot given to kill a wounded person or animal


    The hunter gave the deer a coup de grâce to end its suffering.

  • a successful attempt to overthrow a government that has itself been involved in a coup


    The countercoup led to the restoration of democracy.

Origins of coup

from French 'coup', meaning 'blow' or 'strike'


Summary: coup in Brief

The term 'coup' [kuː] refers to a sudden, violent, and illegal seizure of power from a government. It can be exemplified by 'The military staged a coup and overthrew the government.' 'Coup' extends into phrases like 'coup d'état,' and idioms like 'pull off a coup,' denoting significant achievements or successes.

How do native speakers use this expression?