sour·​puss | \ ˈsau̇(-ə)r-ˌpu̇s How to pronounce sourpuss (audio) \
plural sourpusses

Definition of sourpuss

: a person who complains frequently or constantly and looks unhappy : grump, grouch … coach Dan Gable, he of the Olympian intensity and until recently a chronic sourpuss, valiantly attempted to fight off a smile.— Austin Murphy When we four kids got banged up, whether it was barking our knees or breaking a leg, at least one of our dour, sourpuss relatives could be relied upon to say, "Oh, you'll live."— Dana Jennings

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Examples of sourpuss in a Sentence

He's just an old sourpuss. that old sourpuss must spend all his time making sure no one traipses across his lawn

Recent Examples on the Web

Even a sourpuss like Heifetz let his hair down madly dashing through the finale like a child’s first moments at Disneyland. Los Angeles Times, "Review: The Budapest Festival Orchestra takes over the Bowl," 31 July 2019 Reeves shoulders the dual roles of twin brothers with markedly divergent personalities: peevish sourpuss John and sweet-natured James, who is deep into a losing battle with AIDS. Don Aucoin,, "A moving journey in Zeitgeist’s ‘Love! Valour! Compassion!’," 7 May 2018 According to the Washington Post, a jury awarded famed sourpuss Grumpy Cat $710,000 in damages on Monday, settling a lawsuit that began in 2015 between the cat’s company and the Grenade beverage company. Kate Hogan,, "Internet Favorite Grumpy Cat Wins $710,000 in Copyright Lawsuit," 25 Jan. 2018 To most Internet users, Grumpy Cat - the feline with a furry frown - is a minor celebrity that capitalized on the popularity of memes in 2012 as a perpetual sourpuss. The Washington Post,, "Doomsday Clock just moved: It's now 2 minutes to 'midnight,' the symbolic hour of the apocalypse," 25 Jan. 2018 Herewith, a timeline of Ford's evolution into an irritable sourpuss. Nick Schager, Esquire, "Harrison Ford: A Grumpy Timeline," 16 Aug. 2013

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

1930, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for sourpuss

puss entry 2

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Learn More about sourpuss

Dictionary Entries near sourpuss

sour on

sour orange

sour plum


sour rot

sour salt

sour sap

Statistics for sourpuss

Last Updated

9 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sourpuss

The first known use of sourpuss was in 1930

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More Definitions for sourpuss



English Language Learners Definition of sourpuss

informal : a person who complains frequently or constantly and looks unhappy

More from Merriam-Webster on sourpuss

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sourpuss

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sourpuss

Comments on sourpuss

What made you want to look up sourpuss? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


formidable, illustrious, or eminent

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