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Dutch courage

noun, Sometimes Offensive.
courage inspired by drunkenness or drinking liquor.
Origin of Dutch courage
First recorded in 1805-15
Usage note
Dutch courage is foolish courage or misplaced confidence. Because “Dutch” is used to imply that the courage is not genuine, the term is sometimes perceived as insulting to or by the Dutch. See also Dutch. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for Dutch courage

Dutch courage

false courage gained from drinking alcohol
alcoholic drink
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
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Slang definitions & phrases for Dutch courage

Dutch courage

noun phrase

False or fleeting bravery resulting from liquor: A man in liquor is full of Dutch courage

[1820s+; like many other pejorative uses of Dutch, this comes from the 17th century, when the English and the Hollanders were chronically at war. In some uses, though, Dutch means ''German'' rather than ''Netherlandish,'' and the cases are not easily sorted]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with Dutch courage

Dutch courage

False courage acquired by drinking liquor, as in He had a quick drink to give him Dutch courage. This idiom alludes to the reputed heavy drinking of the Dutch, and was first referred to in Edmund Waller's Instructions to a Painter (1665): “The Dutch their wine, and all their brandy lose, Disarm'd of that from which their courage grows.”
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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