Definition of ci-devant in English:

ci-devant

adjective

  • [attributive] From or in an earlier time (used to indicate that someone or something once possessed a specified characteristic but no longer does so)

    ‘her ci-devant student, now her lover’
    • ‘The sweat-soaked, frightened, and bedraggled ci-devant dandy hammered at the door of his last-hope refuge.’
    • ‘The ci-devant banker, then a widower with an only daughter, Esther, had journeyed to England.’
    • ‘I cannot say I think his manners have much of that elegance which might have been expected from a person of his ci-devant rank.’
    • ‘The school's ci-devant principal admits she may have made a mistake.’
    one-time, erstwhile, sometime, late, as was
    View synonyms

Origin

Early 18th century: French, literally heretofore.

Pronunciation:

ci-devant

/ˌsēdəˈvänt/