affecting, implying, or deliberately revealing shrewd knowledge of secret or private information: a knowing glance.
that knows; having knowledge or information; intelligent.
shrewd, sharp, or astute.
conscious; intentional; deliberate.

Origin of knowing

1325–75; Middle English knawynge (earlier knowende, knawande). See know1, -ing2
Related formsknow·ing·ly, adverbknow·ing·ness, noun

Synonyms for knowing Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for knowingly

deliberately, purposely, consciously, wittingly

Examples from the Web for knowingly

Contemporary Examples of knowingly

Historical Examples of knowingly

  • "That's the outside o' the cup an' platter," she said knowingly.

    Tiverton Tales

    Alice Brown

  • “I was not knowingly aware that hospitals had trademarks,” said Mr. Gubb.

  • "That's what you said this afternoon," replied Biterolf, knowingly.


    James Huneker

  • The clawing hand hauled at my shoulder; he leered at me knowingly.

    Lord Jim

    Joseph Conrad

  • Of course nobody but a fool would have put a queen there knowingly!'

British Dictionary definitions for knowingly



suggesting secret information or knowledge
wise, shrewd, or clever
deliberate; intentional


there is no knowing one cannot tell
Derived Formsknowingly, adverbknowingness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for knowingly

late 14c., from knowing + -ly (2).



"with knowledge of truth," late 14c., from present participle of know (v.). Related: Knowingly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper