have a lot of bottle

have (a lot) of bottle

To have the will to act boldly; to have a lot of nerve. Primarily heard in UK. Wow, that intern has a lot of bottle, asking for a raise on her first day!
See also: bottle, have, of

have (or show) a lot of bottle

have (or show) boldness or initiative. British informal
The mid 19th-century slang phrase no bottle , meaning ‘no good or useless’, is the probable origin of bottle 's current sense of ‘courage or nerve’. Nowadays we also find the expressions lose your bottle meaning ‘lose your nerve’ and bottle out meaning ‘fail to do something as a result of losing your nerve’.
See also: bottle, have, lot, of
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