wi·​sen·​hei·​mer ˈwī-zᵊn-ˌhī-mər How to pronounce wisenheimer (audio)
variants or less commonly weisenheimer

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Wisenheimer and More "Wise" Words

We wouldn't joke around about the origin of this witty word. In the early 20th century, someone had the smart idea to combine the adjective wise (one sense of which means "insolent, smart-alecky, or fresh") with -enheimer, playing on the pattern of family names such as Oppenheimer and Guggenheimer. Of course, wisenheimer isn't the only "wise-" word for someone who jokes around. There's also wiseacre, wisecracker, and wise guy. All of these jokesters are fond of making wisecracks.

Examples of wisenheimer in a Sentence

it seems like every time we go to the movies, sitting behind us is some wisenheimer making snide cracks
Recent Examples on the Web Also, the movie knows when to ease up on the wisenheimer instinct. Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune, 15 Sep. 2023 Stan is a bit of a wisenheimer, and Sandler puts his natural yappiness to good use. Mark Feeney, BostonGlobe.com, 9 June 2022

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

Word History


wise entry 1 + -enheimer (as in family names such as Guggenheimer, Oppenheimer)

First Known Use

1904, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of wisenheimer was in 1904


Dictionary Entries Near wisenheimer

Cite this Entry

“Wisenheimer.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wisenheimer. Accessed 18 Jul. 2024.

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