Definition of tour de force in US English:

tour de force

noun

  • An impressive performance or achievement that has been accomplished or managed with great skill.

    ‘his novel is a tour de force’
    • ‘In Dundee, where it was premiered, it was a tour de force, commenting nicely on the inadequacy of art to convey the reality of life.’
    • ‘The pianist's dazzling rendition of the Vivace finale was a pianistic tour de force.’
    • ‘It's a tour de force of a performance; one that would be enough to recommend the film on its own.’
    • ‘The music, like the man, is energetic, abrasive and challenging, and live, he's a tour de force.’
    • ‘It was an extraordinary tour de force but no headline-catcher.’
    • ‘Their self-titled debut was a tour de force, a record at once wildly experimental and eminently accessible.’
    • ‘But to pigeonhole this great structure as an engineering tour de force would be to miss the point.’
    • ‘She accomplishes the tour de force of making us forget in what language this play is supposed to be, for she transcends locality.’
    • ‘I have read three chapters of the book in manuscript and can advise that it is an eye-opening tour de force.’
    • ‘But no, the world was told the next morning that her appearance was a tour de force that somehow stilled all doubts about her candidacy.’
    • ‘His design was a tour de force, and it became one of the most glamorous and widely admired of all the Cold War embassies.’
    • ‘His group's success was a spectacular tour de force of meticulous technique and solid research design.’
    • ‘I heard him speak on this, and it was a tour de force.’
    • ‘That a comparative tour de force on them should be written by a Swede is peculiarly appropriate.’
    • ‘The novel becomes a tour de force in which one literary trick succeeds another.’
    • ‘It is a tour de force: a justification, in itself, for the existence of movies, since no other art could accomplish quite this.’
    • ‘Focus on covering the five boroughs, for example, or eat and drink your way through Manhattan in a gastronomic tour de force.’
    • ‘The book is something of a tour de force in creating sympathy for a character who, properly speaking, ought to arouse feelings of contempt.’
    • ‘Eventually, dish after dish of sublimely spiced specialities came dashing out of the kitchen like a dramatic tour de force.’
    • ‘It struck the judges as something of a tour de force, a complex composition in which most of the detail had to be suppressed in order to preserve a sense of pictorial unity.’
    triumph, masterpiece, supreme example, coup, marvellous feat, feather in one's cap, wonder, sensation, master stroke
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Origin

French, literally ‘feat of strength’.

Pronunciation

tour de force

/ˌto͝or də ˈfôrs//ˌtʊr də ˈfɔrs/