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

  • adj. Arrogantly impudent; brazen.
  • adj. Showing or requiring courage and fortitude; bold.
  • adj. Chiefly British Jumpy; nervous.
  • adj. Archaic Full of muscular force; sinewy.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Having nerve; bold; brazen.
  • adj. Feeling nervous, anxious or agitated.
  • adj. Strong; sinewy.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Strong; sinewy.
  • adj. Offensively bold or presumptuous; insolent; cheeky; pushy.
  • adj. Exhibiting courage or daring; bold; plucky.
  • adj. Nervous{6}; apprehensive; edgy{1}.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Vigorous; sinewy; strong, as if well-nerved or full of nervous force.
  • Courageous; having or exhibiting fortitude or nerve.

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

  • adj. being in a tense state
  • adj. showing or requiring courage and contempt of danger
  • adj. offensively bold


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Say, boss, "-- and Sundown leaned toward Corliss confidentially and lowered his voice, --" I ain't what you'd call a nervy man, but say, I got somethin 'jest as good.

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  • What Ronnie is sure about is that he's not going to spend this glorious September Saturday afternoon on a trip to "nervy" Aunt Edna's house.

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  • Well I guess you're glad we "nervy" Clinton supporters are finally backing down.

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  • If you don't know about Alsatian wines, I can assure you that they are perfect spring-into-summer picks with vibrant acidity and a kind of nervy, racy quality that keeps the wine lively and bright down to the last drop.

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  • It takes a certain kind of nervy woman to pull that look off, however.

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  • I don't know if it's hormones or the way this week has been a "nervy" one, and with church tomorrow.

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  • Still get kind of nervy when I go in there at night to sleep.

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  • Without these moments of rest the conditions of life at present and the constitutions for which the new word "nervy" has had to be invented, will give us tempers and temperaments incapable of repose and solitude.

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  • Leading our horses very cautiously along the road, for sentinels were posted in every direction, and at such 'nervy' times men frequently fire before they challenge, we made our way to a small estaminet which we found crammed with French soldiers.

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  • Nervous v. brave, daring.

    May 24, 2008