audacity

noun
au·​dac·​i·​ty | \ ȯ-ˈda-sə-tē How to pronounce audacity (audio) \
plural audacities

Definition of audacity

1 : the quality or state of being audacious: such as
a : intrepid boldness knights admired for their audacity
b : bold or arrogant disregard of normal restraints had the audacity to defy his boss
2 : an audacious act usually used in plural Her worst audacities did not seem to surprise him.— Edith Wharton

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for audacity

temerity, audacity, hardihood, effrontery, nerve, cheek, gall, chutzpah mean conspicuous or flagrant boldness. temerity suggests boldness arising from rashness and contempt of danger. had the temerity to refuse audacity implies a disregard of restraints commonly imposed by convention or prudence. an entrepreneur with audacity and vision hardihood suggests firmness in daring and defiance. admired for her hardihood effrontery implies shameless, insolent disregard of propriety or courtesy. outraged at his effrontery nerve, cheek, gall, and chutzpah are informal equivalents for effrontery. the nerve of that guy has the cheek to call herself a singer had the gall to demand proof the chutzpah needed for a career in show business

Examples of audacity in a Sentence

I could not believe their audacity. He had the audacity to suggest that it was all my fault.

Recent Examples on the Web

Eclecticism was the collection’s virtue—and its audacity. Nicole Phelps, Vogue, "The Top 12 Shows of Paris Fashion Week Fall 2019," 6 Mar. 2019 For Pinterest and Zoom Video, braving the public waters may be less an act of audacity than an act of necessity. Dan Gallagher, WSJ, "Pinterest and Zoom Aim to Jump In, Not Overboard," 18 Apr. 2019 The drawings from that book reprinted here pay overt homage to the style of the period, but even more to the audacity of its artists to subversively — often savagely — lampoon their targets while still leaving them laughing and wanting more. Steven Heller, New York Times, "Tom Wolfe’s Lesser Known Career as a Cartoonist," 6 July 2018 This terrifying tale has the audacity to take place in broad daylight in the backwoods of a rural Kentucky town caught in the crosshairs of the opioid epidemic. Kellee Terrell, Harper's BAZAAR, "Jen McGowan's Feminist Horror Rust Creek Is Exactly What Hollywood Needs Right Now," 22 Jan. 2019 Emblematic of their audacity was Park Briar, a 150-unit building in Queens. Susanne Craig, The Seattle Times, "Trump engaged in suspect tax schemes as he reaped riches from father," 2 Oct. 2018 First half: After the electric scenes inside and outside the game before kick off, the first 20 minutes were something of a disappointment, as Roma controlled the tempo and even had the audacity to take shots. SI.com, "Twitter Bows Down As Mohamed Salah Produces One of the Great Champions League Performances vs Roma," 24 Apr. 2018 Born of Thomas Alva Edison’s ingenuity and John Pierpont Morgan’s audacity, GE built the dynamos that generated the electricity, the wires that carried it and the lightbulbs that burned it. Thomas Gryta And Ted Mann, WSJ, "GE Powered the American Century—Then It Burned Out," 14 Dec. 2018 Someone had the audacity to attempt to smuggle 70 finches hidden inside hair rollers onto a flight from Georgetown, Guyana, to New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport. Sam Blum, Popular Mechanics, "Customs Officials Seize 70 Finches Crammed into Hair Rollers at John F. Kennedy Airport," 13 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'audacity.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of audacity

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for audacity

Middle English audacite, borrowed from Medieval Latin audācitāt-, audācitās, from Latin audāc-, audāx "daring, bold, excessively daring, reckless" + -itāt-, -itās -ity — more at audacious

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about audacity

Statistics for audacity

Last Updated

10 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for audacity

The first known use of audacity was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for audacity

audacity

noun

English Language Learners Definition of audacity

: a confident and daring quality that is often seen as shocking or rude : an audacious quality

audacity

noun
au·​dac·​i·​ty | \ ȯ-ˈda-sə-tē\

Kids Definition of audacity

: a bold and daring quality that is sometimes shocking or rude She had the audacity to show up uninvited.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on audacity

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with audacity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for audacity

Spanish Central: Translation of audacity

Nglish: Translation of audacity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of audacity for Arabic Speakers

Comments on audacity

What made you want to look up audacity? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a sum of money that is sent as a payment

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Time Traveler Quiz: Which Word Came First?

  • time traveler quiz which word came first
  • Which came first?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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