Per Se Definition

pər sā, sē
By (or in) itself; intrinsically.
Webster's New World
By or through itself. Standing alone; on its own merits; without need for reference to outside facts. The opposite of per quod.
Webster's New World Law
Per se is defined as by itself.
An example of per se is "It's not the attitude by itself that bothered me."

By itself; without consideration of extraneous factors.

The law makes drunk driving illegal per se.
(chiefly in negative polarity environments) As such; as one would expect from the name.
Well, that's not correct per se, but the situation is something like that.

Origin of Per Se

  • From Latin per se (“by itself"), from per (“by, through") and se (“itself, himself, herself, themselves").

    From Wiktionary

  • Latin per sē per per itself

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition


Find Similar Words

Find similar words to per se using the buttons below.

Words Starting With

Words Ending With


per se