Definitions

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

  • adj. As characterized by oneself, often without right or justification: "poets, real or self-styled” ( Constantine Fitzgibbon). See Usage Note at so-called.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Describing something claimed by the recipient, as a title one given to oneself.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Called or styled by one's self; pretended; would-be

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

  • adj. as claimed by and for yourself often without justification

Etymologies

self- +‎ styled (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Last night Kristin Davis, the self-styled Manhattan madam who supplied prostitutes to former New York governor Eliot Spitzer, claimed Strauss-Kahn had also been a client.

    Grand jury to hear from alleged victim before Strauss-Kahn trial decision

  • By placing such a tasteless photo alongside an oversimplified argument that failed to address the deeper issues of race in sports, the self-styled "Worldwide Leader In Sports" prioritized getting page views over serving its readership and failed miserably to lead the discussion.

    Hank Koebler: ESPN's "Whiteface" Vick Is Distastefully Bad Journalism

  • The self-styled "February 20 movement" — apparently not for any particular historic reason — was largely summoned through social media like Facebook.

    Thousands march in Morocco to demand changes

  • The AARP, self-styled lobby for the superannuated, is trying to rally oldsters behind ObamaCare.

    'Terrifying Numbers for Democrats'

  • Bosch and Haller are teamed, not for the first time, in "The Reversal" (Little, Brown, 389 pages, $27.99), but with a twist: Mickey, the sardonically self-styled "defender of the damned," is tapped by the district attorney to be special independent prosecutor for the retrial of a child-murderer whose two-decades-old conviction has been thrown out as a result of recent DNA findings.

    Death in L.A.; Southern Suspicion; Spenser Gets Artistic

  • Those in Britain who evoke the majestic diversity of Hindu beliefs and practices usually incur the hostility of self-styled custodians of the religion.

    The Hindus: An Alternative History by Wendy Doniger – review

  • X Factor versions of pop freaks, strays, chameleons and self-styled "icons" have emerged to jostle with the conformist, middle-of-the-road song and dancers.

    Paul Morley on music

  • With their easy charm and straight-talking, Buffett and Berkshire vice-chairman Charlie Munger have made Berkshire's annual meeting in Omaha, Nebraska, a pilgrimage for thousands of investors, a self-styled "Woodstock for capitalists".

    Warren Buffett closes in on choosing his successor

  • As the self-styled heir to John Pierpont Morgan's legacy, Dimon rescued Bear Stearns from bankruptcy and, along with the Federal Reserve, emerged as one of the lenders of last resort during the later stages of the crisis.

    Jamie Dimon, JPMorgan Chief, Wants Some R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Reuters

  • One such avenue involved Don Foster, a professor of English at Vassar College and a self-styled literary detective, who had achieved modest celebrity by examining punctuation and other linguistic fingerprints to identify Joe Klein, who was then a Newsweek columnist, as the author of the anonymously written 1996 political novel, Primary Colors.

    The Wrong Man

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