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90s Slang You Should Know


[self-i-steem, self-] /ˈsɛlf ɪˈstim, ˌsɛlf-/
a realistic respect for or favorable impression of oneself; self-respect.
an inordinately or exaggeratedly favorable impression of oneself.
Origin of self-esteem
First recorded in 1650-60
diffidence. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for self-esteem
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The very worst way to induce a man to learn is to begin by telling him he is ignorant, and thereby insulting his self-esteem.

    The Hills and the Vale Richard Jefferies
  • The day that you arrived here, you began by wounding the self-esteem of a priest.

    An Eagle Flight Jos Rizal
  • His self-esteem was entitled to rise in proportion with the distance he could run or kick or throw or hit.

    Sinister Street, vol. 2 Compton Mackenzie
  • Helen's manner was cold to a point far from flattering to his self-esteem.

  • Even in these private pages, my self-esteem finds it hard to confess what happened.

    The Legacy of Cain Wilkie Collins
British Dictionary definitions for self-esteem


respect for or a favourable opinion of oneself
an unduly high opinion of oneself; vanity
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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Word Origin and History for self-esteem

1650s, from self- + esteem (n.). Popularized by phrenology, which assigned it a "bump" (Spurzheim, 1815).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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