Definition of wuss in US English:



  • A weak or ineffectual person (often used as a general term of abuse).

    • ‘I am going to be a wuss and apply for parking in the building, even if it is $70.00 more a month than a lot 2 blocks away.’
    • ‘I can't give up just yet, then I'd consider myself a wuss!’
    • ‘I guess I have to learn to stop being such a wuss and not let things like this get to me, right?’
    • ‘In other news: after five years in the South I am officially a wuss about the cold.’
    • ‘Boys who don't conform are ridiculed, called wimps and wusses.’
    • ‘Only wimps and wusses blamed their misfortune on others - real men made their own fortune.’
    • ‘Before that I had thought that a piercing at the top of my ear might look nice, but a friend who had had it done talked me out of it on the grounds that it hurt and I was a wuss.’
    • ‘She was partly right, of course; I did think he was kind of a wuss.’
    • ‘There was also a trolley that could take you up if you didn't think you could manage the climb, but I didn't want to be a total wuss about it either.’
    • ‘Branded a wuss for fainting under the effects of a virus at Aberdeen on the opening day last season, Burke is now being lauded as a whizz for feinting past opponents using pace, power and poise.’
    • ‘Call me a wuss, but I don't think that's a nice message.’
    • ‘‘Come on, you make me sound like a wuss,’ I said, trying not to sound like a sissy idiot and miserably failing.’
    • ‘We sweltered along to the end of the Palace Pier, where Emma and her dad rode the rollercoaster (whilst Neil and I, wusses that we are, looked on).’
    • ‘But I guess I hate to come across to people as a wuss.’
    • ‘‘I'll see you as a wuss if you can't admit to what you're feeling,’ she told him.’
    • ‘Call me a wuss, but the older I get, the more I value the comfort of a roof, bed and sanitation.’
    • ‘Call me a wimp and a wuss if you want to, but I could picture him in my head, and I couldn't talk to him.’
    • ‘They talked about it for quite a long time, how even though people might think you're a wuss, you should always buckle up.’
    • ‘I felt bad refusing to do things - I felt like such a wuss.’
    • ‘The image in Great Britain is that you are a bit of a wuss if you cannot keep up with it all.’


[no object]wuss out
  • Fail to do or complete something as a result of fear or lack of confidence.

    ‘she'll probably wuss out because she fears my mighty bowling prowess’
    • ‘Don't wait until the pain is excruciating, but don't wuss out and tap before the arm is straight or the choke is actually choking either.’
    • ‘You didn't wuss out, Luke; you made a smart decision.’
    • ‘Should I wuss out and take the safe route by saying that I would be neutral?’
    • ‘Are you going to the game or are you going to wuss out and go to sleep?’
    • ‘They were in dangerous territory here, but it almost felt a like a game of chicken -- neither one wanted to wuss out first.’
    • ‘At least he showed some heart in the minutes he played and didn't totally wuss out.’
    • ‘Officers refer to people who wuss out with contempt.’
    • ‘But you go anyway, mostly because you're strapped to a skydiving instructor who's pushing you from behind and won't let you wuss out or stall.’
    • ‘He didn't care that anybody thought he wussed out after spraining his knee, and his bosses were not motivated to cover for him.’
    • ‘The Canucks better not wuss out against Boston this coming December like they did in the finals.’
    avoid, evade, dodge, escape from, run away from, baulk at, flinch from
    View synonyms


1970s: of unknown origin.