[ mah-choh ]
/ ˈmɑ tʃoʊ /


having or characterized by qualities considered manly, especially when manifested in an assertive, self-conscious, or dominating way.
having a strong or exaggerated sense of power or the right to dominate.

noun, plural ma·chos.

Also ma·cho·ism. assertive or aggressive manliness; machismo.
an assertively virile, dominating, or domineering male.

Nearby words

  1. machinery steel,
  2. machinima,
  3. machinist,
  4. machismo,
  5. machmeter,
  6. machpelah,
  7. machree,
  8. machtpolitik,
  9. machu picchu,
  10. machzor

Origin of macho

1925–30, Americanism < Spanish: literally, male < Latin masculus; see masculine

Related formsan·ti·ma·cho, adjectivesu·per·ma·cho, noun, plural su·per·ma·chos.un·ma·cho, adjective

Can be confusedmale masculine macho (see synonym study at male) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for macho

British Dictionary definitions for macho


/ (ˈmætʃəʊ) /


denoting or exhibiting pride in characteristics believed to be typically masculine, such as physical strength, sexual appetite, etc

noun plural machos

a man who displays such characteristics

Word Origin for macho

C20: from Spanish: male; see machismo

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 macho


1928 (n.) "tough guy," from Spanish macho "male animal," noun use of adjective meaning "masculine, virile," from Latin masculus (see masculine). As an adjective, first attested in English 1959.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Science definitions for macho


[ mächō ]

Short for massive astrophysical compact halo object.Any of various massive dark objects, such as a brown dwarf star, black hole, or large planet, found in a galactic halo. MACHOs are thought to make up at least a part of the dark matter that apparently pervades much of the universe.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Culture definitions for macho


[ (mah-choh) ]

The often exaggerated, aggressive virility of a male: “Jim likes to wear a torn T-shirt and a black leather jacket when he rides his motorcycle. I guess he thinks it makes him look macho.” The original Spanish word means “male.”

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.