Etymology
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casus belli (n.)

an act justifying war, 1840, from Latin casus "case" (see case (n.1)) + belli, genitive of bellum "war" (see bellicose).

updated on October 16, 2017

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Definitions of casus belli from WordNet

casus belli (n.)
an event used to justify starting a war;
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.