Advanced and Proficiency Vocabulary for Exams(e.g.GRE, Banks, Civil Services, SAT / LSAT). For IELTS/TOEFL, and everyday spoken vocabulary, go to our Spoken Vocabulary Database.
The formal word ‘detente’ refers to an improvement or relaxation of a strained relationship, particularly between countries. It is essentially a mutual agreement to be more friendly and open with each other. This is an important term in the field of diplomacy and is therefore mostly encountered in relation to politics, though it is not exclusive to it.
There is hope that if negotiations are able to go ahead, a period of detente between the rival nations will follow.
I’ll never be friends with Steve, but we have reached something of a detente and agreed to put our differences aside for the good of the business.
That country’s decision to increase their border guards marks a break from the detente they reached with their neighbour and will put the two countries back on a path of confrontation.