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 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 Having a successful startup takes much more than mere chutzpah. Kristin Larson, Fortune, "How Minnidip Made A Splash With Its Inflatable Pools," 22 Aug. 2019 By Daniel Silva In this absorbing exercise in literary chutzpah, Silva brings his Israeli spymaster Gabriel Allon back again for more bloodletting and realpolitik chicanery on behalf of Israel and the Western Alliance. Richard Lipez, Washington Post, "Looking for a summer thriller? Here are 9 picks for your beach bag.," 20 June 2019 No bank would lend Chrysler money, and Iacocca — who for years had railed against federal intervention in the auto industry — lobbied Washington in a memorable display of chutzpah and skill. Donald Woutat,, "Lee Iacocca, father of the Ford Mustang who later rescued Chrysler, dies at 94," 2 July 2019 As the outré fashion on parade at this year’s Met Gala made clear, camp is a cultural term that embodies a style laden with humor, chutzpah, and go-for-it glitz. Ingrid Abramovitch, ELLE Decor, "Behold the Campiest Rooms of All Time," 7 May 2019 Here was my potter, throwing every ounce of his creative chutzpah into the reimagining of our home. Simon Doonan, ELLE Decor, "Jonathan Adler and Simon Doonan Give Their Greenwich Village Home a Glitz Makeover," 8 Mar. 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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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).


meddlesome, informal, or unofficial

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