mox·​ie | \ ˈmäk-sē How to pronounce moxie (audio) \

Definition of moxie

1 : energy, pep woke up full of moxie
2 : courage, determination it takes … moxie to pull up roots and go to a land where the culture and probably the language are totally foreign— M. J. McClary
3 : know-how was impressed with his musical moxie and hired him as a solo

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Did You Know?

Hot roasted peanuts! Fresh popcorn! Ice-cold Moxie! You might have heard such a snack vendor's cry at a baseball game-if you attended it in 1924. That was the heyday of the soft drink named Moxie, which some claim outsold Coca-Cola at the height of its popularity. The beverage was a favorite of American writer E. B. White, who wrote, "Moxie contains gentian root, which is the path to the good life. This was known in the second century before Christ and is a boon to me today." By 1930, moxie had become a slang term for nerve and verve, perhaps because some people thought the drink was a tonic that could cure virtually any ill and bring vim back to even the most lethargic individual.

Examples of moxie in a Sentence

He showed a lot of moxie in questioning the policy. it was old-fashioned military moxie that got medical supplies to the disaster site in record time
Recent Examples on the Web Its faux-riot-grrl moxie still leaves a metallic aftertaste. Stephanie Zacharek, Time, "Birds of Prey Is a Candy-Colored Joy Ride, But Its Pleasures Ring Hollow," 5 Feb. 2020 This is not the first time her moxie has gone viral. Caitlin O'kane, CBS News, "Memes flood the internet after Nancy Pelosi rips up Trump's State of the Union speech," 5 Feb. 2020 But Ramsey’s moxie and toughness was a storyline throughout an eight-win campaign season. Jon Blau, Indianapolis Star, "IU football QB Peyton Ramsey enters transfer portal," 27 Jan. 2020 Marty will get the call Saturday in Champaign after showing skill (8 of 10 passing) and moxie in a 38-22 loss to Minnesota. Teddy Greenstein,, "7 thoughts as Northwestern begins rivalry week against Illinois, including what’s new (QB Andrew Marty) and what’s next (a 6th year for TJ Green?)," 24 Nov. 2019 Here, we are faced with circumstances so opaque — no one is talking — as to be truly troubling in the moxie department. Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times, "Commentary: What is Plan B for the L.A. Phil and L.A. Opera?," 18 Sep. 2019 While Langley, 51, saw Banks' moxie on a screen, Banks observed Langley's acumen in navigating the industry. Rebecca Keegan, The Hollywood Reporter, "How Elizabeth Banks and Donna Langley Formed a Rare Hollywood Alliance: "We Always Were Problem-Solving Together"," 16 Dec. 2019 Time after time, Mond has shown moxie and grit with an even-keel approach on the field. Alex Miller, Dallas News, "3 reasons why Texas A&M could be better in 2020, including something they haven’t had since 2011 with Ryan Tannehill," 8 Jan. 2020 Both of those teams found the right formula of underdog moxie and overdog confidence to ride a wave of wins, to silence the oddsmakers and doubters., "Patriots getting a taste of how the other half lives - The Boston Globe," 1 Jan. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'moxie.' 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 moxie

1930, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for moxie

from Moxie, a trademark for a soft drink

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Time Traveler for moxie

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The first known use of moxie was in 1930

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Last Updated

28 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Moxie.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Apr. 2020.

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More Definitions for moxie


How to pronounce moxie (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of moxie

US, informal + old-fashioned
: the ability to be active
: courage or determination

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with moxie

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