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noun Chiefly New England, Midland, and Southern U.S.
  1. stewed fruit; fruit sauce.
  2. fresh vegetables.
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Origin of sass1

First recorded in 1765–75; variant of sauce


  1. impudent or disrespectful back talk: Both parents refuse to take any sass from their kids.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to answer back in an impudent manner: Don't sass your mother.
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Origin of sass2

1855–60, Americanism; back formation from sassy1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

cheek, retort, guff, mouth, answer, lip, sauce

Examples from the Web for sass

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British Dictionary definitions for sass


  1. insolent or impudent talk or behaviour
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verb (intr)
  1. to talk or answer back in such a way
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Word Origin

C20: back formation from sassy 1
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 sass


"impudence," 1835, back-formation from sassy. The verb is first recorded 1856, from the noun. Related: Sassed; sassing. Sass (n.) as a variant of sauce is attested from 1775.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper