See more synonyms for smash on
verb (used with object)
  1. to break to pieces with violence and often with a crashing sound, as by striking, letting fall, or dashing against something; shatter: He smashed the vase against the wall.
  2. to defeat, disappoint, or disillusion utterly.
  3. to hit or strike (someone or something) with force.
  4. to overthrow or destroy something considered as harmful: They smashed the drug racket.
  5. to ruin financially: The depression smashed him.
  6. Tennis, Badminton, Table Tennis. to hit (a ball or shuttlecock) overhead or overhand with a hard downward motion, causing the shot to move very swiftly and to strike the ground or table usually at a sharp angle.
verb (used without object)
  1. to break to pieces from a violent blow or collision.
  2. to dash with a shattering or crushing force or with great violence; crash (usually followed by against, into, through, etc.).
  3. to become financially ruined or bankrupt (often followed by up).
  4. to flatten and compress the signatures of a book in a press before binding.
  1. the act or an instance of smashing or shattering.
  2. the sound of such a smash.
  3. a blow, hit, or slap.
  4. a destructive collision, as between automobiles.
  5. a smashed or shattered condition.
  6. a process or state of collapse, ruin, or destruction: the total smash that another war would surely bring.
  7. financial failure or ruin.
  8. Informal. smash hit.
  9. a drink made of brandy, or other liquor, with sugar, water, mint, and ice.
  10. Tennis, Badminton, Table Tennis.
    1. an overhead or overhand stroke in which the ball or shuttlecock is hit with a hard, downward motion causing it to move very swiftly and to strike the ground or table usually at a sharp angle.
    2. a ball hit with such a stroke.
  1. of, relating to, or constituting a great success: That composer has written many smash tunes.

Origin of smash

1690–1700; perhaps blend of smack2 and mash1
Related formssmash·a·ble, adjective

Synonyms for smash

See more synonyms for on
5. bankrupt. 11. crash.

Synonym study

1. See break. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for smash

Contemporary Examples of smash

Historical Examples of smash

  • I am sorry he made such a smash at last, but it is all that could be expected.

    Life in London

    Edwin Hodder

  • Don't go to smash, Dick, just at the beginning of your life.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • You'll be joggled in this crowd, an' break 'em all to smash.

    Meadow Grass

    Alice Brown

  • Ask your sister to marry me first, and smash you up afterwards.

    Roden's Corner

    Henry Seton Merriman

  • I felt an absurd desire to smash it, for the impudent thing had been running all the while.

British Dictionary definitions for smash


  1. to break into pieces violently and usually noisily
  2. (when intr, foll by against, through, into, etc) to throw or crash (against) vigorously, causing shatteringhe smashed the equipment; it smashed against the wall
  3. (tr) to hit forcefully and suddenly
  4. (tr) tennis squash badminton to hit (the ball) fast and powerfully, esp with an overhead stroke
  5. (tr) to defeat or wreck (persons, theories, etc)
  6. (tr) to make bankrupt
  7. (intr) to collide violently; crash
  8. (intr often foll by up) to go bankrupt
  9. smash someone's face in informal to beat someone severely
  1. an act, instance, or sound of smashing or the state of being smashed
  2. a violent collision, esp of vehicles
  3. a total failure or collapse, as of a business
  4. tennis squash badminton a fast and powerful overhead stroke
  5. informal
    1. something having popular success
    2. (in combination)smash-hit
  6. slang loose change; coins
  1. with a smash
See also smash-up
Derived Formssmashable, adjective

Word Origin for smash

C18: probably from sm (ack ² + m) ash
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 smash

1759, "break to pieces," earlier "kick downstairs" (c.1700), probably of imitative origin (cf. smack (v.), mash (v.), crush (v.)). Meaning "act with crushing force" is from 1813; that of "strike violently" is from 1835. Tennis sense is from 1882. Smash-and-grab (adj.) is first attested 1927.


1725, "hard blow," from smash (v.). Meaning "broken-up condition" is from 1798; that of "failure, financial collapse" is from 1839. Tennis sense is from 1882. Meaning "great success" is from 1923 ("Variety" headline, Oct. 16, in reference to Broadway productions of "The Fool" and "The Rise of Rosie O'Reilly").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper