: saucily free and forward : flippantly cocky and assured
: being trim and chic : jaunty
a pert little hat
: piquantly stimulating
is a pert notion
pertly adverb
pertness noun

Examples of pert in a Sentence

a pert girl who is a member of the cheerleading squad a pert retort that irritated the teacher
Recent Examples on the Web Sales were boosted by a national prime-time television ad campaign in which a disorganized young man bumps into a pert young woman at the library, knocking her Trapper to the floor. Emily Langer, Washington Post, 30 Aug. 2022 But on closer inspection, there are differences: This cropper is shirtless, his backside a bit too pert, and the stalks of asparagus growing from the ground are, in fact, penises. Max Norman David Chow Victoria Petro-Conroy, New York Times, 19 Aug. 2022 This dichotomy—a pert good girl who longs to be bad, a cheeky bad girl trying her hardest to be good—echoed throughout Newton-John’s long career as an actress and singer. Rachel Syme, The New Yorker, 9 Aug. 2022 The airport is three miles away, and the central shopping and dining district is contained within a pert five-block grid. Travel + Leisure, 16 June 2022 Don’t Look Up in a pale blue Gucci suit, standing alongside a beaming, pregnant Jennifer Lawrence, a clean-cut Leonardo Dicaprio, and a pert Meryl Streep. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, 6 Dec. 2021 Ohlsson’s left hand alone exposed any number of passages glossed over by most interpretations, and the orchestra under Blomstedt was a pert, colorful, and utterly cohesive body. Zachary Lewis, cleveland, 2 Aug. 2021 In this recipe, on the other hand, alliums are front and center, with leeks standing upright, pert and proud, and calling unapologetic attention to themselves. New York Times, 16 Apr. 2021 If The Odyssey had been the story of a glamour girl, Doris Lilly would be its pert heroine in a fur chubby endlessly stranded on a sleek banquette. Callahan Tormey, Town & Country, 28 Dec. 2020 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pert.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English, evident, attractive, saucy, short for apert evident, from Anglo-French, from Latin apertus open, from past participle of aperire to open

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of pert was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near pert

Cite this Entry

“Pert.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pert. Accessed 23 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


: being trim and chic
pertly adverb
pertness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on pert

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