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Meaning of cause célèbre

cause cé•lè•bre

Pronunciation: (kôz' su-leb'ru, -leb' Fr. kōz sā-leb'r&supschwa), [key]
— pl. causes cé•lè•bres
  1. any controversy that attracts great public attention, as a celebrated legal case or trial.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.