smirkier; smirkiest
: showing or suggesting a smug, condescending, or self-satisfied attitude : smirking
In [Michael] Keaton's hands, they felt, Batman would become a smirky wisenheimer.Bill Zehme
I bristle at the sight of their wrinkled smirky faces looking on in amusement as though I dressed up like this for their entertainment.Tracey Bateman

Examples of smirky in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The first half is stilted and smirky, with Farrelly’s filmmaking serviceable at best, some of the motivation very rushed. Katie Walsh, Los Angeles Times, 29 Sep. 2022 Remember the 2018 summit in Helsinki, when Trump horrified the West by swallowing hook, line and sinker Putin's smirky denial of any meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election? Star Tribune, 8 Feb. 2021 Jean Smart is a playful presence as Laurie, a smirky mask-hating bull in everybody else’s my-costume-is-my-pathology china shop. Darren Franich,, 15 Oct. 2019 Such a perspective could so easily lean toward smirky voyeurism or cloying cuteness. Ben Brantley, New York Times, 30 Aug. 2017 His go-to weapons — the smirky sarcasm, the barbed comebacks, the vicious politeness — seem uniquely designed to drive his sparring partners nuts, frequently making for terrific television. The Hive, 24 Feb. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'smirky.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1758, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of smirky was circa 1758

Dictionary Entries Near smirky

Cite this Entry

“Smirky.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


smirkier; smirkiest
: suggesting or being a smirk
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!