variants: or less commonly chutzpa or or hutzpa \ ˈhu̇t-​spə How to pronounce hutzpa (audio) , ˈḵu̇t-​ , -​(ˌ)spä \

Definition of chutzpah

: supreme self-confidence : nerve, gall It took a lot of chutzpah to stand up to him the way she did.

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Choose the Right Synonym for chutzpah

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 chutzpah in a Sentence

had the chutzpah to demand that he be treated as a special case and be given priority in settling his insurance claim
Recent Examples on the Web Much of Wall Street’s wealth, pride, and chutzpah spring from its ability to stay a step ahead by understanding and managing risk. Max Abelson,, "Wall Street Gets Blindsided by the Coronavirus Meltdown," 10 May 2020 In the late 1970s and ’80s, however, even as South Africa nudged into ever-sharpening conflict between its white minority leaders and its black majority, Sun City seemed a creation of staggering chutzpah. Alan Cowell, New York Times, "Sol Kerzner, South African Casino Tycoon, Is Dead at 84," 27 Mar. 2020 Roberts doesn’t love rewarding that kind of norm-defying chutzpah—and that alone could incline him toward respecting stare decisis, and invalidating the Louisiana law. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, "Possible Responses to the Major Abortion Case Before the Supreme Court," 5 Mar. 2020 The chutzpah is revealed on social media and in interviews, where Lewerke speaks with refreshing honesty. Rainer Sabin, Detroit Free Press, "Former Michigan State QB Brian Lewerke must show true talent to find NFL home," 29 Feb. 2020 A few weeks later, the Bears coach showed his think-big chutzpah with a grand request. Dan Wiederer,, "‘How lucky am I?’: For Matt Nagy, a fateful — and Chicago — connection to Coach K has proved energizing," 9 Dec. 2019 Among age groups, LinkedIn reports, Gen Z took top honors for sheer holiday chutzpah. Anne Fisher, Fortune, "Most People Will Be Working During the Holidays Because They Can," 26 Dec. 2019 But how many of them have the drive, the smarts, the chutzpah — and the talent — to turn into a Barbara Stanwyck? Ty Burr,, "Imagine Barbara Stanwyck on YouTube," 29 Aug. 2019 Khaykin liked Ostrovskiy’s chutzpah and started hiring him for surveillance jobs. Ronan Farrow, The New Yorker, "The Black Cube Chronicles: The Private Investigators," 7 Oct. 2019

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

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First Known Use of chutzpah

1867, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for chutzpah

Yiddish khutspe, from Late Hebrew ḥuṣpāh

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Time Traveler for chutzpah

Time Traveler

The first known use of chutzpah was in 1867

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Statistics for chutzpah

Last Updated

18 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Chutzpah.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Jun. 2020.

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English Language Learners Definition of chutzpah

approving : personal confidence or courage that allows someone to do or say things that may seem shocking to others

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for chutzpah

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with chutzpah

Spanish Central: Translation of chutzpah

Nglish: Translation of chutzpah for Spanish Speakers

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