One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
nounPlural felos de semass noun
Suicide.‘the inquest brought in a verdict of felo de se’
self-destruction, taking one's own life, self-murder, self-slaughterView synonyms
- ‘Nineteenth-century regulations as to the interment of those guilty of ‘felo de se’ were savagely punitive.’
- ‘If one kills oneself inadvertently while trying to kill another, one is also guilty of felo de se, because the intent was still to murder.’
- ‘Would it perhaps bore you if I explained my reasons for not excluding felo de se from that infinite list of acts which are now lawful?’
From Anglo-Latin, literally ‘felon of himself’; formerly a criminal act in the UK.
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