Definitions

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

  • n. Slang The ability to face difficulty with spirit and courage.
  • n. Slang Aggressive energy; initiative: "His prose has moxie, though it rushes and stumbles from a pent-up surgeā€ ( Patricia Hampl).
  • n. Slang Skill; know-how.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. backbone, determination and fortitude
  • n. initiative or skill

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. energy; pep.
  • n. courage, determination.
  • n. Know-how, expertise.

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

  • n. fortitude and determination

Etymologies

From Moxie, trademark for a soft drink.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From the name of an American patent medicine first manufactured about 1885. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • gentian juice

    December 23, 2008

  • Maybe it's like recreational drugs, as opposed to medicinal ones.

    My daily intake of Coke, for caffeine, is necessary to my continued existence, not always for recreational purposes.

    April 20, 2008

  • Wikipedia describes the product Moxie as a recreational soft drink. Does anyone know how that differs from an ordinary soft drink?

    April 20, 2008

  • Eww, seafoam moist sounds so nasty.

    November 27, 2007

  • Well arby, people used to use the phrase seafoam moist, but that fell out of favor pretty quickly. So yeah, green is all that's left. ;-)

    October 17, 2007

  • I think spelling seafoam as two words takes moxie.

    October 17, 2007

  • I agree 100% jr, and I know I've seen it spelled that way before - usually in the context of decorating or clothing.

    This lovely bridesmaid's dress in seafoam green will flatter any complexion - yada yada yada

    Another burning question - is there any other word that can follow/modify seafoam aside from green? Or should we just say the expression is always seafoam green and be done with it?

    October 17, 2007

  • Wearing a sea foam green polyester suit with a pink ruffled shirt and white patent leather shoes takes moxie.

    On a side note, why isn't sea foam one word? Both Dictionary.com & Word want to split in half. I think that the two halves want to sit together.

    October 17, 2007

  • Retro? I had a cool, refreshing moxie at lunch today. How can it be retro, if it's always in style?

    October 17, 2007

  • This is one of those words that I would love to see come back into general usage. It's just so retro!

    May 17, 2007

  • December 17, 2006

  • Tastes like medicine, yet I love it.

    December 12, 2006