shrewd

adjective
\ ˈshrüd How to pronounce shrewd (audio) , especially Southern ˈsrüd \

Definition of shrewd

1a : marked by clever discerning awareness and hardheaded acumen shrewd common sense
b : given to wily and artful ways or dealing a shrewd operator
2a : severe, hard a shrewd knock
b : sharp, piercing a shrewd wind
3 archaic : mischievous
4 obsolete : abusive, shrewish
5 obsolete : ominous, dangerous

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Other Words from shrewd

shrewdly adverb
shrewdness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for shrewd

shrewd, sagacious, perspicacious, astute mean acute in perception and sound in judgment. shrewd stresses practical, hardheaded cleverness and judgment. a shrewd judge of character sagacious suggests wisdom, penetration, and farsightedness. sagacious investors got in on the ground floor perspicacious implies unusual power to see through and understand what is puzzling or hidden. a perspicacious counselor saw through the child's facade astute suggests shrewdness, perspicacity, and diplomatic skill. an astute player of party politics

Examples of shrewd in a Sentence

According to Frank Luntz, Republican pollster and spinmeister, these younger working women with small children are critical swing voters. By dint of focus groups and shrewd professional questioning, Luntz has determined what these women need most—more time in their lives. He seemed to regard this finding as a considerable coup. — Molly Ivins, Mother Jones, September/October 2004 When Ann Richards fractured her hand in a fall nine years ago, she went to the doctor for a bone density test only to learn that she had … an early form of osteoporosis. The diagnosis spurred the former Texas governor, whose mother and grandmother also suffered from the disease, to write I'm Not Slowing Down: Winning My Battle with Osteoporosis … an inspiring little volume filled with the author's shrewd insights into healthcare, gender and, yes, politics. — Julie Hale, Book Page, August 2003 One shrewd political tactician who knew what it was like to lose a close election watched Goldwater closely. Nixon had an eye on a comeback in 1968 and knew he needed the South—all of it this time. — Jon Meacham, Newsweek, 23 Dec. 2002 But a growing empire produces tough challenges. Winfrey is used to ironclad control. A shrewd businesswoman, she still signs all the checks of more than $1,000 for her Harpo Entertainment Group, and she meticulously scrutinizes the smaller ones that others sign for her. — Lynette Clemetson, Newsweek, 8 Jan. 2001 She's shrewd about her investments. a shrewd used car dealer who knew how to make the best possible deal
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Recent Examples on the Web But though Asim is a shrewd and critical thinker, his intelligence and sharp wit more often than not alienate him from others. Washington Post, 11 May 2021 Right now, that looks like another of Suns General Manager's shrewd moves in building this NBA Finals roster. José M. Romero, The Arizona Republic, 4 July 2021 His South Florida building career was described as a happy accident, a case of a shrewd retiree spotting a property and launching the second act of his business career. Christine Fernando, USA TODAY, 3 July 2021 Bingwa plays Carmen as a shrewd customer who knows how to leverage power, but keeps her motives and emotions close to the vest. Scott Tobias, Vulture, 1 July 2021 Southwest began flying 50 years ago and quickly emerged as a threat to established carriers with its rock-bottom fares and shrewd use of secondary airports. Alison Sider, WSJ, 23 June 2021 For small businesses, offering this progressively more popular, safe and convenient way for customers to pay for goods and services is a shrewd way to meet consumer demand and ultimately be more profitable. Bill Hardekopf, Forbes, 18 June 2021 Instead, Biden is looking to open lines of communication with the notoriously shrewd Putin in the hopes of stalling further deterioration in relations between the United States and Moscow, which Biden said this week had reached a low point. Kevin Liptak, CNN, 16 June 2021 Although its tone is much lighter than that of the pitch-black Flack, the agents’ efforts to get contracts signed and actors on set can require similarly shrewd manipulation, elaborate lies, interoffice backstabbing. Judy Berman, Time, 11 June 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'shrewd.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of shrewd

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for shrewd

Middle English shrewed, from shrewe + -ed entry 1

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Time Traveler for shrewd

Time Traveler

The first known use of shrewd was in the 13th century

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Statistics for shrewd

Last Updated

18 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Shrewd.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/shrewd. Accessed 24 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for shrewd

shrewd

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of shrewd

: having or showing an ability to understand things and to make good judgments : mentally sharp or clever

shrewd

adjective
\ ˈshrüd How to pronounce shrewd (audio) \
shrewder; shrewdest

Kids Definition of shrewd

: showing quick practical cleverness a shrewd businessman

Other Words from shrewd

shrewdly adverb
shrewdness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on shrewd

Nglish: Translation of shrewd for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of shrewd for Arabic Speakers

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