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See also: JASM



Apparently a variant of jism.


jasm (uncountable)

  1. (archaic, US, slang) Zest for accomplishment; drive.
    • Jeremy has the kind of jasm a junior exec needs to reach the top of the ladder in the corporate world.
  2. (archaic) Jazz.


  • 1863, Josiah Gilbert Holland, Miss Gilbert's Career: An American Story, page 350, Charles Scribner's Sons
    “Yes, sir.  No mistake about that.  Oh! she's just as full of jasm!”
    Frank Sargent laughed again.  “You've got the start of me,” said he.  “Now tell me what ‘jasm’ is.”
    “Well, it’s a sort of word, I guess, that made itself,” said Cheek.  “It’s a good one though—jasm is. If you’ll take thunder and lightning, and a steamboat and a buzz-saw, and mix ’em up, and put ’em into a woman, that’s jasm.”
  • 2004 June 30, Elizabeth Cooper, Drusilla with a Million, page 197, Kessinger Publishing
    I don’t think there is anything more pitiful than a man, who has been in business for himself, to have to give up and say he is a failure. It hurts to be compelled to go into some one’s shop as a clerk or a mechanic when you’ve once been your own master. It’ll put jasm into a lot of men that have lost their nerve and only need some one to set them straight.


  • 1951, Mathews’ Dictionary of Americanisms
  • 1997, Historical Dictionary of American Slang, Random House