smart

adjective
\ ˈsmärt How to pronounce smart (audio) \
smarter; smartest

Definition of smart

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : having or showing a high degree of mental ability : intelligent, bright a smart young student a smart decision/investment/idea That wasn't a very smart thing to do. The pursuit of genius or at least being the smartest person in the room continues to tantalize humans.— Lydia Dishman
2a : witty, clever a smart comedy/sitcom
b informal : rude or impolite in a bold and disrespectful way Don't get smart with me.
3a : neat entry 1, trim entry 2 soldiers in smart uniforms
b : stylish or elegant in dress or appearance For this fall, the smartest skirts will feature hemlines that are either quite long or quite short …The New York Times Magazine a member of the smart set
c : appealing to sophisticated tastes : characteristic of or patronized by fashionable society We dined late at the Oasis, possibly the smartest restaurant in town …— Geri Trotta
4a of a weapon : able to be altered in course during flight : 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
5 : marked by often sharp, forceful activity or vigorous strength a smart pull of the starter cord
6 : brisk entry 1, spirited walking at a smart pace
7 : causing a sharp stinging … their softest touch as smart as lizard's stings …— Shakespeare

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

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Adjective

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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 But Roberts, who has absorbed his share of criticism — much of it justified — for questionable postseason pitching moves in recent years, was smart to let Urias finish the game, a decision Dodgers fans and Jansen couldn’t argue with. Mike Digiovanna, Los Angeles Times, "Why Dave Roberts chose Julio Urías over Kenley Jansen in Game 7," 19 Oct. 2020 Everyone in line was a New Yorker who owns a car, or had been smart enough to befriend somebody who does. Washington Post, "Drive-ins become the venue of choice as coronavirus takes a toll on film festivals," 16 Oct. 2020 The Jets, as constructed, aren’t smart enough to help a franchise quarterback. Dave Hyde, sun-sentinel.com, "Hyde: Jets suffering with the Adam Gase we know (and that’s a looming problem for AFC East) | Commentary," 15 Oct. 2020 But not everyone thinks Biden's approach is so smart. Jeremy Lott, Washington Examiner, "Biden's $2 trillion infrastructure plan gets a mixed reaction from industry groups," 15 Oct. 2020 Fortunately, the producers of Fox's reboot were smart enough to avoid remaking the film note-for-note, and instead found an unexpected way to tie the series to the original film. Therese Odell, Houston Chronicle, "9 horror shows, and 1 film, that are scarier than the 2020 election," 13 Oct. 2020 And Josh is really smart, really understands how to get your defense organized up front that way. Mark Inabinett | Minabinett@al.com, al, "Josh Bynes returning to Baltimore with Bengals," 10 Oct. 2020 Their work is smart as hell, but not afraid to laugh at itself. Jason Farago, New York Times, "Amy Sillman’s Breakthrough Moment Is Here," 8 Oct. 2020 Disney and Lucasfilm are probably smart to want to replicate that sensation. Leah Marilla Thomas, refinery29.com, "Let’s Get Some Facts Straight About The Mandalorian Season 2," 21 Sep. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Upgrade to smart home lighting with this starter kit, which includes four white and colour ambient bulbs and a Hue home hub to voice control your lights. Fiona Tapp, CNN Underscored, "Amazon Prime Day Canada: Your guide to the best deals," 13 Oct. 2020 One pundit insists that newspapers, radio and television didn’t destroy civilization, and neither will smart phones. John Horgan, Scientific American, "Big Tech, Out-of-Control Capitalism and the End of Civilization," 7 Oct. 2020 Some were still smarting from last year's 21-14 loss to Pickerington Central while some were making post-workout pool plans in 6-foot socially distant shouts. Scott Springer, Cincinnati.com, "State runner-up Elder football back on the field for preliminary OHSAA-approved workouts," 27 May 2020 Schools are already smarting financially from losing out on NCAA Tournament revenues from the winter season. Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Can we really expect college football to start on time in the fall? Here's what national experts are saying," 5 May 2020 Most Democratic Senators, still smarting over losing the Scalia seat from Merrick Garland, and understandably so, and concerned about the conservative tilt of the court, and understandably so, were ready to vote against Kavanaugh on the merits. Hope Reese, Longreads, "‘They Were Growing Seedlings…Which Would Sprout To Become Supreme Court Justices’," 18 Dec. 2019 Just about anything with network connectivity belongs to the internet of things, from security cameras and speakers to smart watches and denim jackets. Arielle Pardes, Wired, "The WIRED Guide to the Internet of Things," 10 Feb. 2020 Joe Biden, smarting from a poor performance in Iowa, unleashed on his rivals for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination in a way he's been hesitant to do before. Naomi Lim, Washington Examiner, "Biden dings Sanders as a socialist and warns he'll hurt down-ballot races," 5 Feb. 2020 Both parties are smarting from the general election results. The Economist, "The prospects for reviving Northern Ireland’s government," 9 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Apple might finally release AirTags, a coin-size smart-tracker that relies on Apple's iCloud network to help users locate missing items. Irina Ivanova, CBS News, "How to watch Apple's iPhone event live," 13 Oct. 2020 Now, with Democrats running to deny Trump a second term, on a ticket to be headed by former Vice President Joe Biden, a great debate rages in the party over the extent of Trump's political smarts and acumen. Naomi Lim, Washington Examiner, "After 2016 shock, Democrats scared of their own shadow in facing Trump," 29 Apr. 2020 Under the hood, Apple has stuffed the computing smarts of its flagship 6.1-inch iPhone 11 into the SE's 4.7-inch body, making it arguably the most powerful budget device on the market. Samantha Murphy Kelly, CNN, "The new budget iPhone SE is the right phone for an uncertain time," 25 Apr. 2020 It’s packed full of smarts, as well as being a fount of worthwhile clicks. Chris Stanford, New York Times, "Coronavirus, Antibody Tests, Nova Scotia: Your Monday Briefing," 20 Apr. 2020 Meanwhile, as the seams of the Samos refugee camp burst at the edges, ordinary children demonstrate a level of smarts and resilience beyond their years. Katy Fallon, Fortune, "Europe’s refugee crisis is getting worse—for these children," 1 Feb. 2020 But Donald Trump didn’t come up with those smarts himself. Andrea Bernstein, ProPublica, "Trump Pushed for a Sweetheart Tax Deal on His First Hotel. It’s Cost New York City $410,068,399 and Counting.," 22 Jan. 2020 Two major stereotypes in sports are African-Americans rely mostly on athletic ability and white players get by on their smarts and hard work. Duane Rankin, azcentral, "Steve Nash way more than 'crafty' in becoming one of the game's best ever," 8 May 2020 In Episode 4, the two swear words Michael Jordan thought of when talking about his first impressions of the triangle offense are revealed — but Jackson handled that too because of his smarts and authenticity. Los Angeles Times, "It’s ‘vintage’ Phil Jackson and the Dennis Rodman experience in ‘The Last Dance’," 25 Apr. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb There’s nothing little about this 3,700-acre warbler trap, where birders have spotted more than 30 species of migrating songbirds this year, including American redstarts, so smart-looking in their little orange-and-black suits. Sadie Dingfelder, Washington Post, "During the pandemic, the popularity of birdwatching is soaring. Here’s what you need to know to tune in to the feathered soap opera outside your window.," 26 Aug. 2020 Online retailers like Pottery Barn Kids, Ikea and Amazon are selling everything from utility carts to contain at-home school supplies, to smart-looking kid-size desks and corner desks, which work well in tight quarters. Chicago Tribune Staff, chicagotribune.com, "What you need to know about heading back to school, from pre-K to college," 17 Aug. 2020 But the combination of huge torque and a smart-shifting eight-speed automatic transmission means there's no need to work the engine to 6500 rpm to experience uncomfortable levels of acceleration. Mike Duff, Car and Driver, "2021 Alpina XB7 Throws a Three-Ton Haymaker," 10 July 2020 The sophisticated, ultra-modern interior features smart recessed lighting throughout the first floor, which illuminates and accentuates every intriguing architectural angle. Darla Guillen Gilthorpe, Houston Chronicle, "$5M Lake Houston-area Huffman home features volleyball court, vast acreage," 24 Feb. 2020 The Colorado staff has been smart in moving him up all over the field to get the ball in his hands, even playing him as a Wildcat quarterback at times. Jeff Bailey, The Denver Post, "2020 NFL mock draft — where will CU Buffs WR Laviska Shenault land?," 4 Dec. 2019 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 7

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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Time Traveler for smart

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for smart

Last Updated

23 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Smart.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/smart. Accessed 26 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for smart

smart

adjective
How to pronounce smart (audio)

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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Comments on smart

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