pertaining to, characteristic of, or behaving in the manner of a person who swaggers.

Origin of swaggering

First recorded in 1590–1600; swagger + -ing2
Related formsswag·ger·ing·ly, adverbun·swag·ger·ing, adjectiveun·swag·ger·ing·ly, adverb



verb (used without object)

to walk or strut with a defiant or insolent air.
to boast or brag noisily.

verb (used with object)

to bring, drive, force, etc., by blustering.


swaggering manner, conduct, or walk; ostentatious display of arrogance and conceit.

Origin of swagger

First recorded in 1580–90; swag1 + -er6
Related formsswag·ger·er, nounout·swag·ger, verb (used with object)

Synonyms for swagger

1. See strut1.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for swaggering

Contemporary Examples of swaggering

Historical Examples of swaggering

  • There is no necessity for this swaggering self-consciousness of freedom.

    American Notes

    Rudyard Kipling

  • "A man's a man when he's got a weapon like that," he would say with a swaggering air.

  • They told the old tales of the bivouac; they sang its naughty or swaggering songs.

  • On the contrary, I look upon you as a swaggering bully and a hoary villain.

    The Frozen Pirate

    W. Clark Russell

  • Swaggering old beggar,” he must have overheard a young sub.

British Dictionary definitions for swaggering




(intr) to walk or behave in an arrogant manner
(intr often foll by about) to brag loudly
(tr) rare to force, influence, etc, by blustering


arrogant gait, conduct, or manner


British informal, rare elegantly fashionable
Derived Formsswaggerer, nounswaggering, adjectiveswaggeringly, adverb

Word Origin for swagger

C16: probably from swag



swaggie (ˈswæɡɪ)


other names for swagman
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 swaggering



1590, first recorded in Shakespeare ("Midsummer Night's Dream"), probably a frequentative form of swag (v.). Related: Swaggered; swaggering. The noun is attested from 1725.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper