smart

adjective
\ ˈsmärt \

Definition of smart

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : making one smart : causing a sharp stinging
2 : marked by often sharp forceful activity or vigorous strength a smart pull of the starter cord
3 : brisk, spirited a smart pace
4a : mentally alert : bright
c : shrewd a smart investment
5a : witty, clever a smart sitcom
b : rude or impolite in a bold and disrespectful way : pert don't get smart with me
6a : neat, trim soldiers in smart uniforms
b : stylish or elegant in dress or appearance
c(1) : appealing to sophisticated tastes
(2) : characteristic of or patronized by fashionable society
7a : being a guided missile a laser-guided smart bomb
b : operating by automation a smart machine tool
c : using a built-in microprocessor for automatic operation, for processing of data, or for achieving greater versatility a smart card By now we're familiar with smart electricity grids, those IT-enhanced networks that generate and distribute power locally …— Robert Visscher

smart

verb
smarted; smarting; smarts

Definition of smart (Entry 2 of 4)

intransitive verb

1 : to cause or be the cause or seat of a sharp stinging pain also : to feel or have such a pain
2a : to feel or endure distress, remorse, or embarrassment smarting from wounded vanity— W. L. Shirer
b : to pay a heavy or stinging penalty would have to smart for this foolishness

smart

noun

Definition of smart (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : a smarting pain especially : a stinging local pain
2 : poignant grief or remorse was not the sort to get over smarts— Sir Winston Churchill
3 smarts plural, slang : intelligence, know-how

smart

adverb

Definition of smart (Entry 4 of 4)

: in a smart manner : smartly

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Other Words from smart

Adjective

smartly adverb
smartness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for smart

Synonyms: Adjective

dapper, natty, sharp, snappy, spruce

Synonyms: Verb

ache, hurt, pain

Synonyms: Noun

ache, pain, pang, prick, shoot, sting, stitch, throe, tingle, twinge

Antonyms: Adjective

disheveled (or dishevelled), frowsy (or frowzy), sloppy, slovenly, unkempt

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Examples of smart in a Sentence

Adjective

Poodles are said to be smart dogs. That was a smart investment. He gave her a smart answer.

Verb

Her eyes were smarting from the smoke. the injection only smarted for a moment

Noun

the toddler was whining over the smart from the cut she had the smarts to start college at age 16, but perhaps not the emotional maturity

Adverb

He plays smart and the fans appreciate that. I dress smarter than she does. Play it smart during the contract negotiations and you'll get more vacation time.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Blunt and Paster have been smart about infusing her press tour looks with a hint of that Disney magic while never losing touch with the actress’ sophisticated side. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "Emily Blunt’s Disney Princess-Worthy Gucci Dress Has to Be Seen to Be Believed," 24 Jan. 2019 The bottom line: There’s no comparison — the Ecobee4 is the best smart thermostat available today. Cnet.com, The Seattle Times, "Hey, Alexa, which gadgets work the best with you?," 7 Nov. 2018 Jackie is a three-year (varsity) player who is really smart and should be healthy and ready to go this season. Bob Narang, chicagotribune.com, "Jacqueline Bickhaus preps for 'season to remember' at Buffalo Grove," 14 July 2018 And devices like smart thermostats and power strips can also cut your use and save money. Marc Saltzman, USA TODAY, "You can slash home energy costs by just replacing light bulbs," 11 July 2018 And is Reggie even smart enough to pull all of this off? Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "Who Shot Hiram? A Look at All of the Possible Suspects on "Riverdale"," 24 Jan. 2019 This does mean you’re not smart enough to work, to have relationships. Molly Burford, Allure, "9 Things You Should Know About Borderline Personality Disorder, From Someone Who Has It," 8 Oct. 2018 Perriand’s pieces have a brilliant timelessness to them that reminds you of what smart and beautiful design can achieve. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Exhibition showcases 80 years of Charlotte Perriand’s brilliant furniture," 14 Dec. 2018 In the case of slime molds, their cytoskeleton may form smart, complex networks able to process sensory information. Katia Moskvitch, WIRED, "Slime Molds Remember—But Do They Learn?," 14 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Senate Democrats, still smarting from being denied that seat, now argue Trump’s nominee must wait until voters have a say in the midterms. Dana Blanton, Fox News, "Fox News Poll: Jury's out on Kavanaugh, voters want Senate vote before midterms," 13 July 2018 Some voters are still smarting from property-tax hikes by the state this past spring for education, and others are looking ahead to February, when Seattle Public Schools will put its own construction and operations levies on the ballot. Daniel Beekman, The Seattle Times, "Seattle property-tax levy to test voters’ generosity toward education," 15 Oct. 2018 Bogle was warned against the dangers of allocating money to smart beta funds. Bloomberg.com, "Balchunas Discusses Bogle’s Smart Beta Warning (Audio)," 12 June 2017 The country’s banks, smarting from decades of low interest rates, have been eager to lend SoftBank billions of dollars, while individual investors have snapped up its bonds. Mayumi Negishi, WSJ, "SoftBank Targets $20 Billion IPO for Japanese Mobile Unit," 12 Nov. 2018 Meanwhile, Indonesia’s government, still smarting from having its entire airline industry put on a black list by Western nations due to shoddy safety oversight, is also inspecting all of the 737 MAX jets operated in the country. Barbara S. Peterson, Popular Mechanics, "Lion Air 610 Had the Same Problem Four Flights in a Row Before It Crashed," 5 Nov. 2018 For voters still smarting over Merrick Garland, that’s the ultimate motivator. Kimberley A. Strassel, WSJ, "The GOP Can’t Win for Losing," 20 Sep. 2018 Let Down in the Valley John Kerry stands up expectant crowds at Sun Valley, already smarting from the no-show status of Bill Gates and Marissa Mayer. Rachel Mosely, Town & Country, "The 1% Daily," 10 July 2014 Dax stays on the sidelines, coaching, still smarting from a wicked block laid down by his rival, Mookie (an off-the-wall Nick Kroll), as a youth. Katie Walsh, latimes.com, "'Uncle Drew' is the surprise comedy of the summer," 28 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The inaugural Pixel was awkward from the start, a weird mash-up of hardware from phonemaker HTC with some Google smarts baked in. Darren Orf, Popular Mechanics, "The Pixel 3’s Greatness Is Measured in Millimeters," 15 Oct. 2018 However, NFL Network analyst Dan Orlovsky believes Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes has a bright future because of his football smarts. Pete Grathoff, kansascity, "Big arm? Sure, but NFL Network analyst raves about Patrick Mahomes' thought process | The Kansas City Star," 22 May 2018 And history tells us that smarts don’t guarantee a successful presidency. Costas Panagopoulos And Kendall Bailey, Washington Post, "Even if Trump is as smart as he says he is, does it matter? Maybe not.," 14 Feb. 2018 The plaudits Sanders gave Obama centered on his smarts and charisma as a candidate. Anne Branigin, The Root, "In Event Honoring MLK, Bernie Sanders’ Comments on Race and Barack Obama Raise Eyebrows," 6 Apr. 2018 Natalie Portman, Cate Blanchett, and Meryl Streep because of their talent and smarts. Marie Claire, "Jane Fonda Finally Feels Like She Made It," 21 Sep. 2018 The fact the matter is, Donald Trump had real political smarts and shrewdness, a brilliant marketer. Fox News, "Kennedy: Kavanaugh is firm that allegation didn't happen," 18 Sep. 2018 Google’s Chromecast can help bring smarts and streaming to your TV. Alexandria Haslam, PCWorld, "This Google Home Mini and Chromecast bundle is $8 off today at Walmart," 12 Sep. 2018 The Happytime Murders also falls short on good old-fashioned movie smarts. Bryan Bishop, The Verge, "The Happytime Murders tests the limits of subverting nostalgia," 24 Aug. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

All this talk about getting smart and standing up to immigrants is a giant con. William Saletan, Slate Magazine, "How Russia exploits American racism and xenophobia for its own gain.," 31 Mar. 2017 Adams, son of the second president, and sixth president himself, was smart, omnivorous, observant, bitchy, and hilarious (though always unintentionally). Nr Symposium, National Review, "It’s Summer, Time to Catch Up on Your Reading — A Symposium," 31 July 2017 Work hard and smart now as this cycle of high dynamics won’t last forever. Jeraldine Saunders, The Mercury News, "Horoscope: March 29, 2017," 29 Mar. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'smart.' 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 smart

Adjective

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adverb

13th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for smart

Adjective

Middle English smert causing pain, from Old English smeart; akin to Old English smeortan

Verb

Middle English smerten, from Old English smeortan; akin to Old High German smerzan to pain

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Dictionary Entries near smart

smaragdite

smarm

smarmy

smart

Smarta

smart aleck

smart-aleckism

Statistics for smart

Last Updated

10 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for smart

The first known use of smart was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for smart

smart

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of smart

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: very good at learning or thinking about things
: showing intelligence or good judgment
informal + disapproving : behaving or talking in a rude or impolite way : showing a lack of respect for someone

smart

verb

English Language Learners Definition of smart (Entry 2 of 3)

: to feel a sudden sharp pain
: to be upset about something

smart

adverb

English Language Learners Definition of smart (Entry 3 of 3)

: in a smart way

smart

adjective
\ ˈsmärt \
smarter; smartest

Kids Definition of smart

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : quick to learn or do : bright smart students
2 : showing good judgment : wise a smart decision
3 : fresh sense 8 “You tryin’ to be smart with me, boy?”— Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, Shiloh
4 : stylish and fashionable a smart dresser
5 : brisk sense 1, spirited I was walking at a smart pace.
6 : controlled by computers and able to do things that seem intelligent a smart machine

Other Words from smart

smartly adverb
smartness noun

smart

verb
smarted; smarting

Kids Definition of smart (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to cause or feel a sharp stinging pain My eyes were smarting from the smoke.
2 : to be upset She's still smarting from the criticism.

smart

noun

Kids Definition of smart (Entry 3 of 3)

: a stinging pain usually in one spot
\ ˈsmärt \

Medical Definition of smart

: to cause or be the cause or seat of a sharp poignant pain rapid fatigue with burning and smarting of the conjunctiva— H. G. Armstrong also : to feel or have such a pain

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More from Merriam-Webster on smart

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with smart

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for smart

Spanish Central: Translation of smart

Nglish: Translation of smart for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of smart for Arabic Speakers

Comments on smart

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