smart

adjective
\ ˈsmärt How to pronounce smart (audio) \

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

The song, which celebrated their respective neighborhoods of Andheri East and Kurla, was ground-breaking for the genre for its relatable subject matter, smart wordplay, and sheer infectiousness. Amit Gurbaxani, Billboard, "Hindi Rapper Divine On Why He Signed With Mass Appeal India: 'It's Nas, Bro'," 13 Sep. 2019 YouTube uses machine learning, a type of AI software that gets smarter by crunching more data and needs less input from human coders. Los Angeles Times, "YouTube will use spotty AI to keep targeted ads off videos for kids," 4 Sep. 2019 Digital advertising targets better When politicians advertise digitally, their advertising can get smarter and more targeted. Liberty Vittert, The Conversation, "You’d be better off lighting your money on fire than giving it to a politician to spend on TV ads," 28 Aug. 2019 Ultimately the goal is to create a block-by-block forecasting system for cities around the US that will help them be smarter about directing mitigation efforts. Lydia Horne, WIRED, "China Trade Spillover, LA’s Pollution by Block, and More News," 26 Aug. 2019 Eventually, Montgomery should get the bulk of the touches (if the Bears are smart). San Diego Union-Tribune, "Fantasy Football Week 2: Start and Sit," 12 Sep. 2019 Modern technologies also mean one does not need to be as smart as Hahn to create at least some kinds of DIY weapons. Matthew Gault, Scientific American, "3-D Printers Could Help Spread Weapons of Mass Destruction," 10 Sep. 2019 But both Emmert and Fee are smart enough to see the endgame here. Mike Finger, ExpressNews.com, "In NCAA fight, athletes inching closer to fairness," 10 Sep. 2019 Placing a small-unit wager on Stanford to at least cover is smart. Chris Wassel, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "Stanford Cardinal at USC Trojans odds, picks and best bets," 6 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

At the same time, the non-glamour markets have to be smarting after an exodus of players to traditionally popular cities like New York and Los Angeles. Rohan Nadkarni, SI.com, "Will the NBA Be Willing to Get Radical in the Next CBA?," 29 July 2019 Still smarting from his predecessor’s missteps in mobile devices, Nadella promised to steer Microsoft away from consumer distractions and toward its highly lucrative business services. By Jonathan Vanian, Fortune, "Cloud Gaming Is Big Tech’s New Street Fight," 19 July 2019 Nothing smarts quite like a sunburn, so use an ocean-friendly sunscreen that'll save your skin and protect the creatures in the water. Scottie Andrew, CNN, "Whether you're spending Labor Day on a beach, boat or couch, here's how to stay safe," 29 Aug. 2019 With one out and the Tribe smarting under a two-hit diet, pinch-hitter Dale Mitchell dropped a single into rightfield. Gene Myers, Detroit Free Press, "65 years ago, Tigers legend Al Kaline threw a runner out — from his butt," 10 Aug. 2019 Transparency suffers: Open government advocates are smarting from a pair of blows they were dealt in the legislative session’s final weeks. Russell Blair, courant.com, "Capitol Week in Review: Tolls vote still looming as General Assembly session ends," 7 June 2019 But Taystee, smarting at Cindy’s betrayal, mails Monica a letter revealing the truth about her mother. Bethonie Butler, Washington Post, "So, you stopped watching ‘Orange Is the New Black’ three seasons ago? Here’s how it ends.," 26 July 2019 But for a Rust Belt city still smarting from the 2008 financial crisis, with crushing pension debt and a $3.7 million operating deficit, what a casino will do to lift it up remains to be seen. Jason Grotto, ProPublica, "From Truck Stops to Elections, a River of Gambling Money Is Flooding Waukegan," 8 Aug. 2019 Cal then opens Pac-12 play Sept. 7 at defending Pac-12 champion Washington, which will be smarting from the Bears’ upset win in Berkeley last year. Jeff Faraudo, The Mercury News, "Cal Football: Bears begin fall camp focused on making offensive improvements," 30 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The Hermione comparison also flattens Warren’s pitch into just two facets of her persona — her gender and her smarts. BostonGlobe.com, "What happens when politics is pushed into a pop culture box - The Boston Globe," 13 Sep. 2019 The women use their power over men, and their smarts, to fulfill both needs and desires. Stephanie Zacharek, Time, "Hustlers Proves Jennifer Lopez Has Been This Great All Along," 12 Sep. 2019 Planetary scientist Lauren Mc Keown, 28, earned widespread praise on Twitter for her response to a man who messaged her on a dating app and underestimated her smarts. Scottie Andrew, CNN, "A former NASA intern says she shut down a dating app match after he asked whether she was a receptionist," 16 Aug. 2019 Seventeen's Ultimate Book of Quizzes will put your smarts to the test on topics ranging from your fave shows to your most important relationships. Alison Caporimo, Seventeen, "Seventeen's New Quiz Issue Is About To Become Your Next Obsession," 13 Aug. 2019 That equation led to a 6-3 start with Alex Smith playing smart, measured football and a similar scenario with veterans Case Keenum or Colt McCoy could buy Haskins more time to grow from the sidelines. Robert Klemko, SI.com, "How One Agent Is Working to Strengthen Diversity in the NFL’s Head Coaching Ranks," 15 July 2019 Photo: Patrick Strattner for The Wall Street Journal Mr. Alsagoff says his home’s smarts go beyond the solar batteries. Beth Decarbo, WSJ, "Smart-Home Tech as a Selling Point, Not a Cost Cutter," 20 June 2019 The difference between those who move it out of the way and those who give up often doesn’t come down to smarts, but instead perseverance and grit. Christina Stembel, Quartz at Work, "Creating Farmgirl Flowers taught me my high school education is more than enough," 29 Aug. 2019 But a new study found a much simpler way to produce birch tar, suggesting glue isn't a good proxy for Neanderthal smarts. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Making Neanderthal Birch Tar Isn’t as Complex as Thought," 26 Aug. 2019

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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Learn More about smart

Dictionary Entries near smart

smaragdite

smarm

smarmy

smart

Smarta

smart aleck

smart-aleckism

Statistics for smart

Last Updated

20 Oct 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 How to pronounce smart (audio) \
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 How to pronounce smart (audio) \

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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