Definition of entente in English:



  • 1A friendly understanding or informal alliance between states or factions.

    ‘the growing entente between former opponents’
    • ‘First came the alliance with Japan in 1902, and then the settling of differences with France over colonial issues via the entente of 1904, a process which was repeated with the entente with Russia in 1907.’
    • ‘After all, every previous alliance, coalition, entente, empire, community, or monetary union of European states has collapsed sooner or later.’
    • ‘China's leaders must also have considered the possibility that their current entente with Russia may not last forever, although they may find it impolitic to say so.’
    • ‘Hitler's government was formed in 1933 on the basis of an entente between elements of the traditional elite and the leadership of the Hitler movement.’
    • ‘Enthusiasm for the English evaporated, while Arran came to an entente with the French, represented by James's widow, Mary of Guise-Lorraine, who ultimately became queen regent in 1554.’
    • ‘But basically our understanding is good and the entente is without any doubt friendly.’
    • ‘This entente covers the Euro-Asian continent, the geo-strategic heart of the world.’
    • ‘Gradually a sort of entente seemed to grow between it and the colonial enemy.’
    • ‘Thus the war again demonstrated the strength of Britain's imperial position, but also, in convincing the British that such ventures were costly and limited friendships better than isolation, helped pave the way for its later ententes.’
    • ‘The ensuing Paris - Bonn entente has dominated the European Community ever since, withstanding all subsequent changes including the expansion of the Community, the collapse of communism, and the unification of Germany.’
    • ‘We noted earlier the ambivalent consequences of the entente policy pursued by Lord Lansdowne, Balfour's foreign secretary, and between 1905 and 1914 by Sir Edward Grey for the Liberals.’
    • ‘An entente with Russia in 1907 followed from the ties with France and concerns about competition with the Tsarist regime in Asia, and growing antagonism with Germany set the pattern for war.’
    • ‘Less formal arrangements - variously known as alignments, ententes, or coalitions - can perform similar functions and exert equally significant effects.’
    • ‘Fables for the Holy Alliance attacked the post-Napoleonic entente between Russia and Austria.’
    • ‘Some countries, such as France, Germany and to a lesser extent China, use the United Nations the way the Great Powers of old Europe used ententes, alliances and the like - to check what they see as a rival power.’
    • ‘Elizabeth pursued the idea of a French marriage at this stage for the sole reason that she thought the French would never agree to a defensive entente against Spain in the absence of a dynastic marriage.’
    • ‘Some historians have therefore been critical of the regent's foreign policy because of its emphasis upon an entente with the maritime powers consummated by the signing of the Triple alliance in 1717.’
    • ‘The exercise of American power from time to time will not lead inexorably to a law of political physics whereby states always coalesce against the top dog in antihegemonist entente.’
    • ‘We need to end the entente between governments and the groups and scale down all political activities conducted under the veil of charity and religion.’
    • ‘Interestingly, these kind of agreements - usually referred to as ententes - are considered less binding than what NATO is - a collective security treaty.’
    understanding, agreement, arrangement, entente cordiale, covenant, settlement
    deal, alliance, treaty, pact, accord, compact, concordat, protocol, convention
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A group of states in an informal alliance.
      • ‘The entente was engaged in continual fierce fighting until the Armistice.’
      association, union, league, treaty, pact, compact, concordat
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2The understanding between Britain and France reached in 1904, forming the basis of Anglo-French cooperation in World War I.
      • ‘If anyone had told these two teams that there was an Entente Cordiale between England and France, there was no evidence shown here.’


Mid 19th century: French entente (cordiale) (friendly) understanding.