smarmy

[ smahr-mee ]
/ ˈsmɑr mi /

adjective, smarm·i·er, smarm·i·est.

excessively or unctuously flattering, ingratiating, servile, etc.: the emcee with the smarmy welcome.

Origin of smarmy

1905–10; smarm, variant of dial. smalm to smear, make slick (< ?) + -y1
Related formssmarm·i·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

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British Dictionary definitions for smarmy

smarmy

/ (ˈsmɑːmɪ) /

adjective smarmier or smarmiest

British informal obsequiously flattering or unpleasantly suave
Derived Formssmarmily, adverbsmarminess, 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 smarmy

smarmy


adj.

"smooth and sleek" (1909); "ingratiating, unctuous," 1924, from smarm + -y (2). Related: Smarmily; smarminess.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper