- to be a source of sharp, local, and usually superficial pain, as a wound.
- to be the cause of a sharp, stinging pain, as an irritating application, a blow, etc.
- to feel a sharp, stinging pain, as in a wound.
- to suffer keenly from wounded feelings: She smarted under their criticism.
- to feel shame or remorse or to suffer in punishment or in return for something.
- to cause a sharp pain to or in.
- quick or prompt in action, as persons.
- having or showing quick intelligence or ready mental capability: a smart student.
- shrewd or sharp, as a person in dealing with others or as in business dealings: a smart businessman.
- clever, witty, or readily effective, as a speaker, speech, rejoinder, etc.
- dashingly or impressively neat or trim in appearance, as persons, dress, etc.
- socially elegant; sophisticated or fashionable: the smart crowd.
- saucy; pert: smart remarks.
- sharply brisk, vigorous, or active: to walk with smart steps.
- sharply severe, as a blow, stroke, etc.
- sharp or keen: a smart pain.
- (of a machine, system, etc.) equipped with electronic control mechanisms and capable of automated and seemingly intelligent operation: smart copiers; smart weapons.
- having properties that can be changed in response to stimuli or environmental conditions; self-regulating: smart fabrics that respond to temperature or light.
- Computers. intelligent(def 4).
- Older Use. considerable; fairly large.
- in a smart manner; smartly.
- a sharp local pain, usually superficial, as from a wound, blow, or sting.
- keen mental suffering, as from wounded feelings, affliction, grievous loss, etc.
- smarts, Slang. intelligence; common sense: He never had the smarts to use his opportunities.
Origin of smart
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for smarter
Why the former Florida governor would be smarter to sit out 2016.Be the Smarter Bush Brother, Jeb: Don’t Run!
December 17, 2014
You were certain that she was smarter than you, lovelier than you, more interesting than you.Is Bigger Better for St. Vincent?
December 4, 2014
The irony is that shows that are meant to be funny are often also the smarter shows.Wanted: Less Terrible Political Coverage on TV
November 19, 2014
Nap Smarter So how do you make the most of your precious nap-time minutes?13 Tips for the Best Nap Ever
August 12, 2014
They are threatened by smarter, younger kids that are coming up that are willing to do three, four and five different pieces.GOP Says ‘Hey Ladies’ But Little Else About Winning Women
May 30, 2014
And the more I hinted at how wonderful I thought she was the smarter she began to think I was.Fair Harbor
Joseph Crosby Lincoln
But even in those days as a callow, trusting youth, he'd been smarter than Boswell.Zero Data
He paused for some time, and then slowly said, "Well, I'll not deny they are smarter."Three Addresses to Girls at School
James Maurice Wilson
They are infinitely readier, smarter, and wittier than Englishmen.
"Yes, and smarter yet for Elmer to discover the impression, and read it," declared Chatz.Pathfinder
- astute, as in business; clever or bright
- quick, witty, and often impertinent in speecha smart talker
- fashionable; chica smart hotel
- well-kept; neat
- causing a sharp stinging pain
- vigorous or brisk
- dialect considerable or numerousa smart price
- (of systems) operating as if by human intelligence by using automatic computer control
- (of a projectile or bomb) containing a device that allows it to be guided to its target
- to feel, cause, or be the source of a sharp stinging physical pain or keen mental distressa nettle sting smarts; he smarted under their abuse
- (often foll by for) to suffer a harsh penalty
- a stinging pain or feeling
- in a smart manner
- Christopher. 1722–71, British poet, author of A Song to David (1763) and Jubilate Agno (written 1758–63, published 1939). He was confined (1756–63) for religious mania and died in a debtors' prison
Word Origin and History for smarter
Old English smeortan "be painful," from Proto-Germanic *smarta- (cf. Middle Dutch smerten, Dutch smarten, Old High German smerzan, German schmerzen "to pain," originally "to bite"), from PIE *smerd- "pain," an extension of the root *mer- (2) "to rub; to harm" (cf. Greek smerdnos "terrible, dreadful," Sanskrit mardayati "grinds, rubs, crushes," Latin mordere "to bite"). Related: Smarted; smarting.
late Old English smeart "painful, severe, stinging; causing a sharp pain," related to smeortan (see smart (v.)). Meaning "executed with force and vigor" is from c.1300. Meaning "quick, active, clever" is attested from c.1300, from the notion of "cutting" wit, words, etc., or else "keen in bargaining." Meaning "trim in attire" first attested 1718, "ascending from the kitchen to the drawing-room c.1880" [Weekley]. For sense evolution, cf. sharp (adj.).
In reference to devices, the sense of "behaving as though guided by intelligence" (e.g. smart bomb) first attested 1972. Smarts "good sense, intelligence," is first recorded 1968. Smart cookie is from 1948.
"sharp pain," c.1200, from sharp (adj.). Cf. cognate Middle Dutch smerte, Dutch smart, Old High German smerzo, German Schmerz "pain."