\ ˈwīz How to pronounce wise (audio) \
wiser; wisest

Definition of wise

 (Entry 1 of 7)

1a : characterized by wisdom : marked by deep understanding, keen discernment, and a capacity for sound judgment
b : exercising or showing sound judgment : prudent a wise investor
2a : evidencing or hinting at the possession of inside information : knowing
b : possessing inside information the police got wise to his whereabouts
d : aware of or informed about a particular matter usually used in the comparative in negative constructions with thewas none the wiser about their plans
3 : insolent, smart-alecky, fresh a tough kid with a wise mouth
4 archaic : skilled in magic or divination
wised; wising

Definition of wise (Entry 2 of 7)

intransitive verb

: to become informed or knowledgeable : learn used with up

transitive verb

: to give instruction or information to : teach usually used with upwise him up about procedures

wise

noun

Definition of wise (Entry 3 of 7)

: manner, way in any wise Old age seemed in no wise to have dulled him, but to have sharpened …— Herman Melville
wised; wising

Definition of wise (Entry 4 of 7)

transitive verb

1 chiefly Scotland
2 chiefly Scotland : to divert or impel in a given direction : send

-wise

adverb combining form

Definition of -wise (Entry 5 of 7)

1a : in the manner of crabwise fanwise
b : in the position or direction of slantwise clockwise
2 : with regard to : in respect of dollarwise

Wise

biographical name (1)
\ ˈwīz How to pronounce Wise (audio) \

Definition of Wise (Entry 6 of 7)

Stephen Samuel 1874–1949 American (Hungarian-born) rabbi

Wise

biographical name (2)

Definition of Wise (Entry 7 of 7)

Thomas James 1859–1937 English bibliophile and forger

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Other Words from wise

Adjective

wisely adverb
wiseness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for wise

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Choose the Right Synonym for wise

Adjective

wise, sage, sapient, judicious, prudent, sensible, sane mean having or showing sound judgment. wise suggests great understanding of people and of situations and unusual discernment and judgment in dealing with them. wise beyond his tender years sage suggests wide experience, great learning, and wisdom. the sage advice of my father sapient suggests great sagacity and discernment. the sapient musings of an old philosopher judicious stresses a capacity for reaching wise decisions or just conclusions. judicious parents using kindness and discipline in equal measure prudent suggests the exercise of restraint guided by sound practical wisdom and discretion. a prudent decision to wait out the storm sensible applies to action guided and restrained by good sense and rationality. a sensible woman who was not fooled by flattery sane stresses mental soundness, rationality, and levelheadedness. remained sane even in times of crises

Examples of wise in a Sentence

Adjective I'm a little wiser now than I was back then. The wisest course of action would be to leave. That was a wise choice. Many have benefited from her wise counsel.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Now, lineup-wise: The Reds should benefit from having the DH. Dave Clark, The Enquirer, "Jon Morosi: Cincinnati Reds will be MLB playoff team in 2020," 3 July 2020 And Zen, wise Octavia is there to take up her brother's mantle. Dalene Rovenstine, EW.com, "The 100 recap: Emori fights for unity in Sanctum," 2 July 2020 Gear wise, Hood recalls Carr playing electric guitar ranging from classic Telecasters and Les Pauls to newfangled B.C. Rich axes. Matt Wake | Mwake@al.com, al, "Muscle Shoals music’s unsung guitar genius," 30 June 2020 Of course, some wise rules and regulations are necessary. Peter Pronovost, STAT, "To make progress against Covid-19, processes must serve people, not a ‘labyrinth of bureaucratic rules’," 30 June 2020 Our role — now more than ever — is to create the fertile ground in which kids can grow up healthy, wise, ethical and largely free to pursue their own version of happiness. David G. Allan, CNN, "Homeschooling our kids about life," 26 June 2020 But that’s where wise leaders will find their greatest opportunities. Geoff Colvin, Fortune, "Coming out of a crisis, the boldest companies win," 25 June 2020 Dear Still Learning: Thank you for your wise words. Annie Lane, oregonlive, "Dear Annie: Readers weigh in on being called ‘dear’," 24 June 2020 The people of western North Carolina are wise and discerning. Fox News, "Madison Cawthorn, 24-year-old who won GOP primary in NC, says Trump congratulated him on 'beautiful' win," 24 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb After Vietnam, Democratic presidents began to wise up. Kevin Baker, Harper's Magazine, "The Striking Gesture," 27 Apr. 2020 The right’s populists might wise up to this eventually. Osita Nwanevu, The New Republic, "Bernie Sanders Has Finally Got Republicans’ Attention," 15 Jan. 2020 Size wise the shrimp were on the shrimpy side for sure, but still an effective dish, particularly as a sharable or appetizer. Matt Wake | Mwake@al.com, al, "Huntsville’s popular taco-bus goes indoors," 1 Oct. 2019 But that's all changing, as more people wise up to the fact that Jordan actually has it all: religious and historical attractions, otherworldly landscapes, and cosmopolitan sophistication. Andrew Solomon, Condé Nast Traveler, "Traveling Through Jordan’s Historic Ruins, Red Dunes, and Dead Sea," 24 July 2019 Turner wants Elwood to wise up and look out for himself. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction: Colson Whitehead Is One of the Finest Novelists in America," 12 July 2019 The 44th anniversary of Illinois’ state lottery is less than seven weeks away, and the only concern state government ever seems to have is when people wise up to the lousy odds, buy fewer tickets and revenue projections are missed. Phil Rosenthal, chicagotribune.com, "Morality a non-factor as Illinois, others weigh sports betting," 14 May 2018 America lags Europe in regulations protecting consumer data, but some companies are starting to wise up. Geoffrey A. Fowler, The Seattle Times, "Lessons from CES: How to make tech gadgets great again," 13 Jan. 2018 There are indications that some academic institutions are beginning to wise up to the dangers. Gina Kolata, New York Times, "Many Academics Are Eager to Publish in Worthless Journals," 30 Oct. 2017

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

Adjective

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

Verb (1)

1905, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

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

History and Etymology for wise

Adjective

Middle English wis, from Old English wīs; akin to Old High German wīs wise, Old English witan to know — more at wit

Noun

Middle English, from Old English wīse; akin to Old High German wīsa manner, Greek eidos form, idein to see — more at wit

Verb (2)

Middle English, from Old English wīsian; akin to Old Norse vīsa to show the way, Old English wīs wise

Adverb combining form

Middle English, from Old English -wīsan, from wīse manner

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Time Traveler for wise

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for wise

Last Updated

7 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Wise.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wise. Accessed 7 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for wise

How to pronounce Wise (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of wise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: having or showing wisdom or knowledge usually from learning or experiencing many things
: based on good reasoning or information : showing good sense or judgment
US, informal : saying things that are rude or insulting

English Language Learners Definition of -wise (Entry 2 of 2)

: in the position or direction of
: in the manner of
informal : with regard to
\ ˈwīz How to pronounce wise (audio) \
wiser; wisest

Kids Definition of wise

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : having or showing good sense or good judgment : sensible a wise woman a wise decision
2 : having knowledge or information I was wise to their trick.
3 : rude or insulting in speech

Other Words from wise

wisely adverb

wise

noun

Kids Definition of wise (Entry 2 of 3)

: manner sense 2, way
Hint: This meaning of wise is used in such phrases as in any wise, in no wise, or in this wise.

-wise

adverb suffix
\ ˌwīz \

Kids Definition of -wise

1 : in the manner of
2 : in the position or direction of clockwise
3 : with regard to The movie is successful profit-wise.

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More from Merriam-Webster on wise

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for wise

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wise

Spanish Central: Translation of wise

Nglish: Translation of wise for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of wise for Arabic Speakers

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