Definition of posh in English:

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Pronunciation: /pɒʃ/


1Elegant or stylishly luxurious: a posh hotel I’ll have to look posh
More example sentences
  • We meet in a tiny plush room in a posh London hotel which is the regular haunt for such interviews.
  • We were surrounded by the old-fashioned glamor of the lobby of the grandest hotel in this posh French seaside resort.
  • A grand bash to celebrate his birthday was held in a posh hotel only five days earlier.
smart, stylish, upmarket, fancy, high-class, fashionable, chic, luxurious, luxury, deluxe, exclusive, select, sumptuous, opulent, lavish, grand, rich, elegant, ornate, ostentatious, showy;
North American  high-toned, upscale
informal classy, swanky, snazzy, plush, plushy, ritzy, flash, la-di-da, fancy-pants
British informal swish
North American informal swank, tony
US informal dicty
South African informal larney
British informal, dated swagger
derogatory chichi
archaic swell
rare sprauncy
1.1British Typical of or belonging to the upper class: she had a posh accent
More example sentences
  • Oh, and people with unpleasantly posh Home Counties accents who speak far louder than they need to in an enclosed space should probably be gagged with gaffer tape.
  • Bourne melds eloquent dance moves and witty everyday gestures to evoke crumbling class divides in this story of the downward spiral of an upper-class man and his posh girlfriend.
  • And he saw the cubs and adults roistering on the huge expanse of lawn that belonged to the posh street running parallel to Hillside Drive.


In an upper-class way: trying to talk posh


[mass noun] British
The quality of being elegant, stylish, or upper class: we finally bought a colour TV, which seemed the height of posh
More example sentences
  • When I first joined, after I'd been in art school, I was understudying and they thought I was posh because I didn't happen to have a broad Glasgow accent.
  • Move over trailer trash here come the park home posh.
  • Its a settee, occasionally a couch if we're feeling posh.


[with object] (posh someone/thing up) British
Smarten someone or something up: we will be getting all poshed up for the company summer ball
More example sentences
  • The interior seems cheap, despite the attempt to posh it up.



Example sentences
  • When the children were babies, I would place them in a small wooden carriage and walk them on the geometrically designed concrete path through a beautiful garden of perfect flowers and poshly grown trees.
  • ‘Oh I suppose that makes it better, I'm afraid I'm busy ’, She replied poshly.
  • In the more poshly trimmed versions, you can fold the back seats flat, too, opening up a space into which you could probably fit, not just the shopping, but also a sheepdog of average growth, provided you pushed hard.


Example sentences
  • Whether it was the poshness of her voice, the crispness of her syntax or whatever, I decided to listen… ‘Blah, blah, blah, your son has won a competition’
  • It has a veritable passion for worshipping those people who are endowed with celebrity and vast visible wealth; yet it has an instinctive antipathy towards poshness and uppity aspirations.
  • He seems obsessed with poshness - wanting to ‘eat out somewhere a bit posh’ and finding the food ‘rather posh’.


Early 20th century: perhaps from slang posh, denoting a dandy. There is no evidence to support the folk etymology that posh is formed from the initials of port out starboard home (referring to the more comfortable accommodation, out of the heat of the sun, on ships between England and India).

  • One of the more frequently repeated explanations of the origin of a word is the story that posh, comes from the initials of ‘port out, starboard home’. This is supposed to refer to the location of the more desirable cabins—on the port side on the outward trip and on the starboard side on the return—on passenger ships between Britain and India in the 19th century. Such cabins would be sheltered from the heat of the sun or benefit from cooling breezes, and so were reserved by wealthy passengers. Sadly, there is no evidence to support this neat and ingenious explanation. The P&O steamship company is supposed to have stamped tickets with the letters P.O.S.H., but no tickets like this have ever been found. A more likely explanation is that the word comes from a 19th-century slang term for a dandy, from thieves' slang for ‘money’. The first recorded example of posh is from a 1915 issue of Blackwood's Magazine.

Words that rhyme with posh

awash, Bosch, bosh, brioche, cloche, cohosh, cosh, dosh, Foch, galosh, gosh, josh, mosh, nosh, quash, slosh, splosh, squash, swash, tosh, wash

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: posh

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