swagger

verb
swag·ger | \ ˈswa-gər \
swaggered; swaggering\ˈswa-g(ə-)riŋ \

Definition of swagger 

(Entry 1 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to conduct oneself in an arrogant or superciliously pompous manner especially : to walk with an air of overbearing self-confidence

2 : boast, brag

transitive verb

: to force by argument or threat : bully

swagger

noun
swag·ger | \ ˈswa-gər \

Definition of swagger (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : an arrogantly self-confident way of walking : an act or instance of swaggering

b : arrogant or conceitedly self-assured behavior

c : ostentatious display or bravado

2 : a self-confident outlook : cockiness

swagger

adjective
swag·ger | \ ˈswa-gər \

Definition of swagger (Entry 3 of 3)

: marked by elegance or showiness : posh

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Other words from swagger

Verb

swaggerer \ˈswa-gər-ər \ noun
swaggeringly \ˈswa-g(ə-)riŋ-lē \ adverb

Synonyms for swagger

Synonyms: Verb

blow, boast, brag, crow, vaunt

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Examples of swagger in a Sentence

Verb

He copped a plea, ratted out a dozen no-neck pals and swaggered off to prison, leaving South Beach temporarily without a pied piper. —Carl Hiaasen, New York Times Book Review, 22 Feb. 2009 So it is a fight rather than an argument, really—a fight over complexity versus ease, a fight that mostly mimics gang war, which is not so much a vigorous instance of manly bloodletting (though it is that too) as a dustup over prestige: who has the prior right to swagger in public. —Cynthia Ozick, Harper's, April 2007 Sometimes he sauntered through the streets of the old town. He looked with awe at the students of the corps, their cheeks gashed and red, who swaggered about in their coloured caps. —W. Somerset Maugham, Of Human Bondage, 1915 I, too, would swagger if I'd won first place in the bowling tournament. hoping to impress the women at the bar, the young man confidently swaggered across the room

Noun

He limps with a noticeable swagger, flamboyantly waving his cane, semi-ironically mimicking the rap stars who are now his peers. —Matt Diehl, Spin, September 2008 He greeted me with the swagger he's learned since he became a fighter pilot, smiling, his blue eyes glowing. —Matthew Klam, Harper's, February 1999 What a hero Tom was become, now! He did not go skipping and prancing, but moved with a dignified swagger as became a pirate who felt that the public eye was on him. —Mark Twain, Tom Sawyer, 1876 He has a swagger that annoys some of his teammates.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Long a swaggering force, these conservatives now tiptoe on social media outlets like Twitter. Kareem Fahim, Washington Post, "Saudi Arabia’s once-powerful conservatives silenced by reforms and repression," 5 June 2018 Mexico is part of a select group that includes only host nation Russia, France and Belgium, in going 2-0-0 and possessing the kind of swaggering confidence that comes with that. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, "After handling South Korea, swaggering Mexico has legitimate shot to win World Cup," 23 June 2018 America — the nation, ironically, that seemed to care the least about soccer — had swaggered in like some Old West lawman and done something nobody else could: clean up the beautiful game. Ken Bensinger, chicagotribune.com, "If the U.S. doesn't get the 2026 World Cup, blame Donald Trump," 12 June 2018 Where that holiday-week concert at Saint Andrew’s had a cozy family vibe, Tuesday’s show swaggered with the feel of a big-time event. Brian Mccollum, Detroit Free Press, "Greta Van Fleet nails the high notes at Fillmore Detroit in homecoming kickoff," 23 May 2018 And Chris Robinson's swaggering, supple vocals and personal, poetic lyrics are some main reasons The Black Crowes were awesome. Matt Wake, AL.com, "Chris Robinson talks Black Crowes, Jimmy Page, drugs, hot new tour," 10 Apr. 2018 Several swaggering Texas doctors are engaging protagonists throughout this decades-long story, and the suspense could give any true-crime podcast a run for its money. Wired Staff, WIRED, "12 Books You Must Read This Summer," 25 May 2018 Singers and rappers could be swaggered out superheroes or African Queens, depending on the vibe. refinery29.com, "Why Proms – Supersized, Superglam – Don’t Look Anything Like The Ones You Remember," 30 Apr. 2018 Any could soon find a confident twentysomething swaggering into their quarterback room. Nate Davis, USA TODAY, "18 questions leading into the 2018 NFL draft," 26 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

And yet, many assumed Mr. Grimm was the favorite, neutralizing Mr. Donovan’s advantages with his Trump-style swagger and relentless ubiquity at diners and borough functions. Alexander Burns, New York Times, "4 Takeaways From Tuesday’s Primary Elections," 27 June 2018 Lee Raymond, Exxon’s boss from 1993 to 2005, personified the swagger at the heart of the company’s ethos. Bradley Olson, WSJ, "Exxon, Once a ‘Perfect Machine,’ Is Running Dry," 13 July 2018 Just look at the glorious autumn swagger Meghan is walking with, clearly not sweating buckets and trying to figure out the fastest way to get Gatorade into her system. Lisa Ryan, The Cut, "Meghan Markle, Like the Rest of Us, Is Clearly Ready for Summer to Be Over," 10 July 2018 Chaney gave Dracula just enough immortal swagger in the flick, the first to actually show a vampire turning into a bat. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, "'Hotel Transylvania 3': Ranking the best movie Draculas, from Bela Lugosi to Adam Sandler," 9 July 2018 Attempts by the West to mount a united challenge to such Chinese swagger are hindered by another fight that the Trump administration has picked with its own allies, after the president’s withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal in 2018. The Economist, "Xi’s world order: July 2024," 7 July 2018 Maybe her apparent lack of legible blackness — of grit, stank and swagger — made a striking contrast with his abundance of it. Wesley Morris, New York Times, "Review: ‘Whitney,’ a Pop Music Tragedy, Is Sad, Strange and Dismaying," 5 July 2018 However, newspaper accounts said Brady lacked Dillinger's nerve and swagger. Dawn Mitchell, Indianapolis Star, "'Kill-Crazy' Brady gang tried to out-gangster John Dillinger," 29 June 2018 What could be more ladylike than the way a pair of stilettos or pumps or even wedges can lengthen the leg and swagger the hips and add an element of danger to the ground beneath one’s feet? Megan Garber, The Atlantic, "What High Heels Can Teach About Gendered ‘Truths’," 26 June 2018

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

Verb

circa 1596, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Noun

1725, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adjective

1879, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for swagger

Verb

probably from swag entry 1 + -er (as in chatter)

Noun

see swagger entry 1

Adjective

see swagger entry 1

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Dictionary Entries near swagger

swage bolt

swager

swage-set

swagger

swagger stick

swaggie

swagman

Statistics for swagger

Last Updated

4 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for swagger

The first known use of swagger was circa 1596

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More Definitions for swagger

swagger

verb

English Language Learners Definition of swagger

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to walk in a very confident way : to walk with a swagger

swagger

noun

English Language Learners Definition of swagger (Entry 2 of 2)

: a way of walking or behaving that shows you have a lot of confidence

swagger

verb
swag·ger | \ ˈswa-gər \
swaggered; swaggering

Kids Definition of swagger

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to walk with a proud strut

swagger

noun

Kids Definition of swagger (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act or instance of walking with a proud strut

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Comments on swagger

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