éminence grise love

Help Wordnik hunt for a million missing words by backing our Kickstarter!

éminence grise


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A powerful adviser or decision-maker who operates secretly or unofficially. Also called gray eminence.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A secret or unofficial decision-maker; the power behind the throne.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. (French) a person who exercises power or influence in certain areas without holding an official position


French, the power behind the throne : éminence, power + grise, feminine of gris, gray, shadowy.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French éminence ("power") + grise ("gray") (Wiktionary)


Sorry, no example sentences found.


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • éminence grise is the head adviser, usually unofficially or behind the scenes, who wields immense power. The éminence grise has perhaps more power than the actual leader. It's like the king's right hand man who actually calls all the shots.

    June 22, 2009