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Originated 1890–95 from Yiddish חוצפּה(khutspe), from Mishnaic Hebrew חֻצְפָּה(khutspá), from חָצַף(khatsáf, to be insolent). Ultimately from Aramaic חוצפא(ḥuṣpāʾ), חֲצַף(ḥaṣap, to be insolent).



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chutzpah (usually uncountable, plural chutzpahs)

  1. (slang) Nearly arrogant courage; utter audacity, effrontery or impudence; supreme self-confidence; exaggerated self-opinion;
    • 22/01/2007, The Times, Modern Manners
      If the service is rotten and the meal a disaster, we should withhold a tip and explain why we are doing so. Few of us have the chutzpah to do this.
    • 12/11/2007, John Scalzi, Whatever, Your Creation Museum Report
      But seriously, the ability to just come out and put on a placard that the Jurassic era is temporally contiguous with the Fifth Dynasty of the Old Kingdom of Egypt — well, there’s a word for that, and that word is chutzpah.

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See also[edit]



  • chutzpah” in The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition, Houghton Mifflin Company, 2000.
  • chutzpah”, in Unabridged,, LLC, 1995–.
  • "chutzpah" in WordNet 2.0, Princeton University, 2003.