\ ˈsas How to pronounce sass (audio) \

Definition of sass

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 informal
a : impudent speech : back talk She takes no sass from her students.
b : bold rudeness or impertinence especially when considered playful, appealing, or courageous It is all dished out by combat-ready waitresses whose borscht belt sass lends extra spice to the meal.— Jane and Michael Stern … Ferraro showed off her sass. She critiqued President Reagan by name with a series of crowd pleasing one-liners.— Kathy Kiely
2 informal : an appealingly exciting, lively, or spirited quality … Mick Jagger's recent solo may be high on style and sass, but it's tough to beat Talk Is Cheap for real primitive cool.— David Fricke As they have for a decade, the international wealthy favor New York City for its comparative safety and social sass.— J. D. Reed Like a vintage jazz tune, fine Scotch delivers smooth flavor and sass.— Audarshia Townsend


sassed; sassing; sasses

Definition of sass (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to talk impudently or disrespectfully to

Examples of sass in a Sentence

Noun an old-fashioned diner where getting sass from the waitstaff is part of the experience Verb He got drunk and sassed a cop.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun If nothing else, though, the stylish and slick thriller brings sass to the secret-agent genre, and there are worse things than watching an evil Chris Evans try to murder Ryan Gosling for two hours. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, 14 July 2022 Always elegant, always graceful, but then, a little bit of sass, a little bit of color, vibrancy. Essence, 2 June 2022 Is Leia’s brand of sass a pleasure to write as well? Brian Davids, The Hollywood Reporter, 7 June 2022 The waitresses, which, as all over town, included several from eastern Europe, were fleet-footed and had just the right amount of sass. John Mariani, Forbes, 6 June 2022 Princess Estelle seems to have been born with a little bit of sass. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, 6 June 2022 The laughter and sass, their love of drawing, their accumulation of dollar bills for a trip to Disney World. Ian Shapira, Washington Post, 25 May 2022 Martha’s brighter moments give Roberts the chance to exude the charisma and sass that lit up her earlier, lighter movies. David Marchese, New York Times, 15 Apr. 2022 Armed with equal amounts of science and sass, Dr. Gunter writes about menopause unapologetically — as a natural phase in women’s lives that should be free from shame and silence. Stephanie Witmer, Good Housekeeping, 30 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb With her awe- and fear-inspiring attitude, the comedian-singer-postmodern diva is often recommended for anyone who loves onstage chaos and sass a la Pink Martini, Liza Minnelli or Bette Midler. Donna Freedman, Anchorage Daily News, 2 Jan. 2020 No stranger to reality TV, Delano got her start by sassing Simon Cowell on American Idol season 7 (as Danny Norriega) but was eliminated after making the Top 16. Sydney Bucksbaum,, 25 Nov. 2019 That's right: Now there's a robot who can sass you as well as any teenager. Daisy Hernandez, Popular Mechanics, 13 June 2019 Here, Prince Harry was captured sassing photographers while getting out of a car to visit the hospital after his cousin, Princess Beatrice of York, was born in 1988. Lyndsey Matthews, Town & Country, 19 May 2018 Although Archie’s a little shaking at the start of this number (think Zac Efron at the beginning of High School Musical), Betty takes over and uses it as an opportunity to apologize to Veronica after publicly sassing her a few minutes prior. Gianluca Russo, Teen Vogue, 19 Apr. 2018 An entertaining Twitter account, in which Daniels often and humorously sassed back at the name callers, recently went private. Jean Marbella,, 19 Apr. 2018 Lewis also sassed and snarled at critics and interviewers who displeased him. Lindsey Bahr, Esquire, 20 Aug. 2017 Things like negging bosses, sassing bartenders, writing off-the-rails emotional emails to men who didn’t care about me—these used to be core parts of my personality. Meaghan O'connell, Longreads, 20 July 2017 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sass.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of sass


1835, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1856, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for sass


alteration of sauce entry 1

Learn More About sass

Dictionary Entries Near sass




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for sass

Last Updated

21 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Sass.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for sass


\ ˈsas How to pronounce sass (audio) \

Kids Definition of sass

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a rude or disrespectful reply


sassed; sassing

Kids Definition of sass (Entry 2 of 2)

: to speak to in a rude or disrespectful way


Test Your Vocabulary

Odd Habits and Quirks

  • image1926873504
  • Which of the following best describes an easily irritated person?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!