Tuesday, August 30, 2011

chutzpah



chutzpah [ˈhʊtspə] n.

1.) Utter nerve; effrontery: "has the chutzpah to claim a lock on God and morality", New York Times (American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language).

Etymology: Yiddish khutspe, from Mishnaic Hebrew huspâ, from hasap, to be insolent.

"The best example of chutzpah is the lad who killed his father and mother and then asked the judge for mercy because he was an orphan. Chutzpah is guts, boldness, and outrageousness, and it is one of the most essential qualities for a filmmaker" (Writing, Directing, and Producing Documentary Films and Videos, Alan Rosenthal, 2007).

(Abramo e tre angeli, Sebastiano Ricci, 1695)

20 comments:

Zombie said...

I just killed my parents but have mercy cuz I am an orphan! lol.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

I was always told that chutzpah means, literally, balls/testicles. But perhaps it is figurative only.

meandmythinkingcap said...

I remember reading this word around same time as audacity. Kind of blind-boldness or bold and stupid and not exactly brave.

Kristina P. said...

Such a great word. It embodies so much in a simple word.

mjunta said...

nice picture!

Shutterbug said...

this is a word I've heard of! Yay! :D

GMSoccerPicks said...

I have heard this one a couple of times from my jewish grandma. Made me laugh, just like every other yiddish word she uses.

HYDRIOTAPHIA said...

Useful street-wise Yiddish alternative to effrontery indeed.

MRanthrope said...

I've always liked this word. I've heard it used in countless tv shows and films over the years.

Bibi said...

Oh, so THAT's how it's pronounced! Thank you robo-lady!
I've read that quote before. Don't remember where, but the story about the guy and the judge and the parents sounds very familiar.

Hasidic Plumber said...

I'm feeling offended for this. Naaah just kidding, let's get together and have a hava nagila sing along.

JayJay said...

I know this word and it makes me smile. I wish my students had a little less of this though.

Meri said...

one of my favorite words. I pronounce it with extra chutzpah

Henry said...

Hmmm this one's rather pedestrian..

Shaw said...

Michelle Bachmann can't pronounce this word XD

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Now there's a word I like to use!

shari said...

I've used this word to describe people's behavior... I knew what it meant, and I don't know how. Probably from context. That's how I learn most of the words I know.

Mai Yang said...

is this similar to the word GUTS? ^_^

cheshire said...

Reading over posts to check for typos is just too arduous for me; thank you, once again.

Katie said...

I love the word chutzpah. Now why couldn't you have used that word in the paragraph challenge? ;)

I am working on it though... You've been warned.

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