Try Our Apps


Avoid these words. Seriously.


[self-kuh n-grach-uh-ley-shuh n, or, often, -graj-, -kuh ng-, self-] /ˈsɛlf kənˌgrætʃ əˈleɪ ʃən, or, often, -ˌgrædʒ-, -kəŋ-, ˌsɛlf-/
the expression or feeling of uncritical satisfaction with oneself or one's own accomplishment, good fortune, etc.; complacency.
Origin of self-congratulation
First recorded in 1705-15
Related forms
[self-kuh n-grach-uh-luh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee or, often, -graj-, -kuh ng-, self-] /ˈsɛlf kənˈgrætʃ ə ləˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i or, often, -ˈgrædʒ-, -kəŋ-, ˌsɛlf-/ (Show IPA),
self-congratulating, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for self-congratulatory
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Teresa, however, was not at all self-congratulatory on the subject of her gown.

    Lady Cassandra Mrs George de Horne Vaizey
  • The faces of the big four are wreathed in self-congratulatory smiles.

    Search-Light Letters Robert Grant
  • Bill smiled a self-congratulatory smile for the word which gave him the loophole of escape.

    Lightnin' Frank Bacon
  • As he proceeded along these lines one could see the self-congratulatory expression fade from the faces of his white listeners.

    Booker T. Washington

    Emmett J. Scott and Lyman Beecher Stowe
  • Sues saucy, self-congratulatory toss of the head 14 stung her so that she could have cried out.

    Tessa Wadsworth's Discipline Jennie M. Drinkwater
  • The countenance of the captor—his movements, (they are those which the soul dictates,) are all joyous and self-congratulatory.

British Dictionary definitions for self-congratulatory


the state or an instance of congratulating or being pleased with oneself
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for self-congratulatory



1630s, from self- + congratulation.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for self-congratulatory

Word Value for self

Scrabble Words With Friends