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 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 Google’s plan to buy Fitbit took chutzpah from the start. Wired, "Google Is Basically Daring the Government to Block Its Fitbit Deal," 13 Nov. 2019 When her back was to the wall, Gert was at her least complicated, trusting in her chutzpah and stubborn resolve. oregonlive, "Gert Boyle, ‘One Tough Mother’ who led Columbia Sportswear, dies at 95," 3 Nov. 2019 His Broadway career lasted for seven decades; he was known throughout for his chutzpah, smarts, brio, creative range and his willingness to take risks. Chris Jones,, "Harold Prince, who won 21 Tony Awards for shows like ‘Phantom,’ ‘Evita,’ has died at 91," 30 July 2019 Jews, with their Yiddish, gave us chutzpah, schlepping, schmatta, kvetching. Joey Nolfi,, "See RuPaul, Bianca Del Rio, more in exclusive excerpts from Drag: The Complete Story book," 16 Sep. 2019 And the concept alone is so bold and daring, its creators deserve hosannas for having the chutzpah to even try it. Michael Granberry, Dallas News, "In searching for the next ‘Hamilton,’ the makers of the musical ‘Oswald’ traverse the JFK minefield," 23 Aug. 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

29 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Chutzpah.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 26 January 2020.

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More Definitions for chutzpah



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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More from Merriam-Webster on chutzpah

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

Comments on chutzpah

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


to express in a more acceptable way

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