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(N) In America, a festival or feast.

In Britain it refers to a festival held outdoors intended usually to raise money for charity.

(V) To celebrate or honor with a festival or feast.

Pronunciation: Feht


Fete comes to us via Middle English, then Middle French, and finally the Old French term feste, meaning feast.  The earliest known use is in the 1700s.

Why this word?

Unless you are a complete recluse, chances are that you have attended and/or thrown at least one party in your life.  Parties are fun, and having more words to call them by is fun as well.  Class up your next party by calling it a “fete”.  Unexpectedly fete a friend for their birthday.  Perhaps you recently attended a Superbowl fete?  To me the word implies a certain elegance to the party, or an honor conferred upon the person being feted.  Try using at your next party!

How to use the word fete in a sentence?

“The Christmas fete was judged to be a great success by all based on the number of people who attended and the amount of money which was raised.”

“Upon her arrival at the castle she was dined, wined, and feted until she could do naught but give her agreement to the union, as it seemed in their best interest to be on good terms with such a hospitable and generous people.”

“He had a bit too much to drink during the fete last night and cannot remember the majority of the revelry and mischief which he undertook.”


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Written by Kate Fulton

Kate Fulton has a bachelor’s degree in classics and psychology from the University of Massachusetts and is working on a library science degree from Simmons College. She has always been fascinated by words- their usage, spelling, and etymology. Kate may be one of the few people who enjoyed the verbal section of the SAT. Yes, she is a word geek. Currently she bores her husband and young daughter with her love of vocabulary.


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