mox·​ie | \ˈmäk-sē \

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

Her reply was a reflection of her moxie, not of a sincere desire to raise an army of Bengali-speaking conquistadors. Reihan Salam, WSJ, "A Way Out of the Immigration Crisis," 21 Sep. 2018 Dorsey, who was around Brett Favre and Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay, likes the moxie. Mary Kay Cabot,, "Browns' interest in Baker Mayfield seems sincere, per source, and John Dorsey praises him," 26 Mar. 2018 In short, Waters has shown Lackey Ryan what having a spine and moxie looks like. Stephen A. Crockett Jr., The Root, "Paul Ryan Forgets That He’s Garbage, Calls on Maxine Waters to Apologize," 26 June 2018 Four runs in the bottom of the inning followed by six straight LSU outs — -four by Barnhill strikeouts — completed a 5-3 rally that affirmed she and the Gators posses the moxie to make another run at the College World Series. Edgar Thompson,, "UF pitcher Kelly Barnhill has a complete game on, off the field," 10 May 2018 As the starting quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys from 2006 until injuries forced him from the game a decade later, Romo had the skill, mind and moxie of Aaron Rodgers, but not the feet (or offensive line). Gary D'amato, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "D'Amato: Tony Romo treating golf as a second career," 12 July 2018 Raccoons, with their five-fingered paws and scrappy brand of moxie, are in a league of their own. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "How Humans Created the Ultimate Superpests," 9 July 2018 His antique wardrobe import business is successful, and she, through sheer moxie, lands an excellent job as a film documentary producer. Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Girls & Boys': Theater Review," 28 June 2018 Sally might be characterized as having more moxie than talent, and the non-nightclub characters are just ordinary people, but still, our ears crave more. Daryl H. Miller,, "The world is ending, so come to the 'Cabaret'," 15 June 2018

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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Dictionary Entries near moxie

mow the lawn





Mo Yan


Statistics for moxie

Last Updated

22 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for moxie

The first known use of moxie was in 1930

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More Definitions for moxie



English Language Learners Definition of moxie

: the ability to be active

: courage or determination

More from Merriam-Webster on moxie

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to enclose within walls

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