Ugly American


: an American in a foreign country whose behavior is offensive to the people of that country

Word History


The Ugly American (1958), collection of stories by Eugene Burdick and William J. Lederer American authors

First Known Use

1965, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of Ugly American was in 1965

Dictionary Entries Near Ugly American

Cite this Entry

“Ugly American.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Jun. 2024.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!