Definition of effrontery in English:



  • [mass noun] Insolent or impertinent behaviour:

    ‘one juror had the effrontery to challenge the coroner's decision’
    • ‘But O'Duffy's admiration for the sheer effrontery of the man persisted, and he arranged for another trial to be held in conjunction with the Irish championships.’
    • ‘For his effrontery he was rewarded with the Home Ministry!’
    • ‘Obviously, I'm not Catholic, but I think it takes a lot of effrontery for the media to try to dictate the doctrine for Catholics.’
    • ‘But the police and a jingoistic public ensure that such effrontery is suitably decried and the witnesses end up regretting having spoken the truth.’
    • ‘With brazen effrontery, however, they painted themselves as martyrs for freedom.’
    • ‘With breathtaking effrontery, Cameron finally segues seamlessly into a little sci-fi fantasy showing his scientists discovering an alien city on another planet complete with bug-eyed aliens.’
    • ‘He then committed several acts of brazen effrontery.’
    • ‘He said: ‘The sheer effrontery of Kennet in failing to consult even the local members beggars belief.’’
    • ‘I know he doesn't hear that one much because he managed to communicate stunned, silent disapproval at my effrontery over the telephone.’
    • ‘What worries me is the sheer effrontery, the level of twistedness implicit in what he is doing.’
    • ‘Various VIPs were attracted by their effrontery.’
    • ‘Then, at a time like this our councillors have the mindless effrontery to propose a 16 per cent tax increase.’
    • ‘Even the French, accustomed to such effrontery from their leaders, especially their current one, could only gasp in disbelief, or at least shrug their shoulders in resignation.’
    • ‘On the whole, however, he carries the reader with him by sheer effrontery.’
    • ‘As for this ‘cross party reform group’, I can think of nothing less democratic or more dangerous; and what effrontery to ask us to support them.’
    • ‘The music was what counted but the cockiness, the combination of arrogance and provocation, the sheer effrontery was thrilling to witness.’
    • ‘The version I drove costs a simply staggering £30,900 and then they have the bare-faced effrontery to whack on another £350 for metallic paint.’
    • ‘Proposing the motion, he said ‘Such a practice is a petty and heartless effrontery to the most vulnerable and deserving section of our society.’’
    • ‘A lot of it's just effrontery, sheer brazen nerve, and a sort of monstrous cockiness.’
    • ‘He'd come over to confront Stan and Tiny and to tell them exactly what he thought of their effrontery, but held back the accusation for want of proof.’
    impudence, impertinence, cheek, insolence, cheekiness, audacity, temerity, brazenness, forwardness, front, presumption, nerve, gall, pertness, boldness, shamelessness, impoliteness, disrespect, bad manners, unmannerliness, overfamiliarity
    answering back, talking back
    brass, brass neck, neck, face, lip, mouth, cockiness
    sass, sassiness, nerviness, chutzpah, back talk
    crust, backchat
    malapertness, contumely, procacity, assumption
    dare, make so bold as, be so bold as, presume, have the temerity, have the audacity, have the nerve, be brave enough, have the courage, go so far as
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Late 17th century: from French effronterie, based on late Latin effrons, effront- shameless, barefaced, from ex- out + frons forehead.