[self-puh-zesh-uh n, self-]


the quality of being self-possessed; control of one's feelings, behavior, etc.; composure; poise.

Origin of self-possession

First recorded in 1735–45 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for self-possession

self-confidence, composure, equanimity, poise, countenance, aplomb

Examples from the Web for self-possession

Contemporary Examples of self-possession

Historical Examples of self-possession

  • At last, Gilder was restored in a measure to his self-possession.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • In that moment of surprise, the self-possession of Heyward did not desert him.

    The Last of the Mohicans

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • He had kept his hat on, and took it off to recover his self-possession.

    My Double Life

    Sarah Bernhardt

  • By this time Mr Coningham had apparently recovered his self-possession.

    Wilfrid Cumbermede

    George MacDonald

  • When I think of it, I marvel yet that I did not lose my self-possession altogether.

    Wilfrid Cumbermede

    George MacDonald

Word Origin and History for self-possession

"command of one's emotions," 1745, from self- + possession (n.). Related: Self-possessed.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper