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cocksure

[kok-shoo r, -shur]
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adjective
  1. perfectly sure or certain; completely confident in one's own mind: She was cocksure that she was able to do the job better than anyone else.
  2. too certain; overconfident: He was so cocksure he would win the election that he didn't even bother to campaign.
  3. Obsolete. perfectly secure or safe.

Origin of cocksure

First recorded in 1510–20; cock1 + sure
Related formscock·sure·ly, adverbcock·sure·ness, noun

Synonyms

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1. cocky, arrogant, conceited.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for cocksure

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • I liked to hear her knock my big men in her cocksure superior way.

    The Harbor

    Ernest Poole

  • In his operations he was a cocksure individual, Mr. Craig was!

  • And he also will learn not to be cocksure and jump at conclusions.

  • Gladstone was remarking but the other day, ‘Harding was always so cocksure.’

    Robert Orange

    John Oliver Hobbes

  • I was so taken aback,” he explained; “he was so ignorant, so cocksure, that he made me mad.

    The White Mice

    Richard Harding Davis


British Dictionary definitions for cocksure

cocksure

adjective
  1. overconfident; arrogant
Derived Formscocksurely, adverbcocksureness, noun

Word Origin

C16: of uncertain origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for cocksure

adj.

1520s, "certain," from cock (n.1) + sure (adj.). Probably "as assured as a cock." "The word was originally perfectly dignified, and habitually used in the most solemn connexions" [OED].

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

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