Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Utter nerve; effrontery: "has the chutzpah to claim a lock on God and morality” ( New York Times).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Nearly arrogant courage; utter audacity, effrontery or impudence; supreme self-confidence; exaggerated self-opinion;

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. (Yiddish) unbelievable gall; insolence; audacity

Etymologies

Yiddish khutspe, from Mishnaic Hebrew ḥuṣpâ, from ḥāṣap, to be insolent; see ḥṣp in Semitic roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Originated 1890–95 from Yiddish חוצפּה (khutspe), from Mishnaic Hebrew חֻצְפָּה (khutspá), from חֲצַף (khátsap, "to be insolent"). Ultimately from Aramaic ḥu ṣpā . (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • Love The Classic, dbmag9, haven't heard it before.
    Meanwhile, not as noteworthy, here's mine.
    Fellow in a book shop goes to the counter with a book entitled 'Chutzpah' and says "I want this book and I'd like you to buy it for me."

    February 1, 2008

  • A boy is taken to court for murdering both of his parents. He pleads to the jury for mercy - after all, he is an orphan.

    December 3, 2006