Use this forum to suggest Good Words for Professor Beard.
Senior Lexiterian
Posts: 959
Joined: Thu Feb 10, 2005 5:28 pm


Postby KatyBr » Thu Mar 16, 2006 2:52 am

v. t. 1. To make smart.

here is a challange for you Dr.Goodword, I came across this word while playing a word game, Can you tell us more about it?


User avatar
Grand Panjandrum
Posts: 5542
Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2006 9:31 am
Location: Finger Lakes, NY

Postby Slava » Sun Jul 12, 2009 12:57 am

Interesting word here. The "to make smart" bit does not reflect on one's intelligence, rather it is what my father used to try to do to me when I was younger and going to something somewhat formal. Lost cause there.

I haven't spent a lot of time looking, but there doesn't seem to be much out there on this bugger. Anyone else care to take a stab at it? It feels like it's a Brit slang term somehow, but perhaps that's just me.
Life is like playing chess with chessmen who each have thoughts and feelings and motives of their own.

User avatar
Grand Panjandrum
Posts: 2578
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2005 3:56 pm
Location: Crownsville, MD

Postby Stargzer » Mon Jul 13, 2009 3:41 pm

From Webster's 1913 Edition:

Sprug (?), v. t. [Cf. Prov. E. sprug up to dress neatly, sprag to prop, a., lively.] To make smart. [Obs.]

Perhaps "smart" is not the intellectual meaning but the "Look smart now!" meaning.

Webster's 1913 Edition:

Smart (Page: 1358)
Smart, n. [OE. smerte. See Smart, v. i.]
3. A fellow who affects smartness, briskness, and vivacity; a dandy. [Slang] Fielding.

Smart (Page: 1358)
Smart (?), a. [Compar. Smarter (?); superl. Smartest.] [OE. smerte. See Smart, v. i.]
4. Accomplishing, or able to accomplish, results quickly; active; sharp; clever. [Colloq.]

5. Efficient; vigorous; brilliant. The stars shine smarter." Dryden.

6. Marked by acuteness or shrewdness; quick in suggestion or reply; vivacious; witty; as, a smart reply; a smart saying.

Who, for the poor renown of being smart Would leave a sting within a brother's heart? Young.
A sentence or two, . . . which I thought very smart. Addison.
7. Pretentious; showy; spruce; as, a smart gown. <-- in modifying dress or appearance, now used in the sense of "neat, trim", or "stylish, attractive, elegant." -->

8. Brisk; fresh; as, a smart breeze. ... [Eng.] Brande & C. Syn. -- Pungent; poignant; sharp; tart; acute; quick; lively; brisk; witty; clever; keen; dashy; showy. -- Smart, Clever.

Smart has been much used in New England to describe a person who is intelligent, vigorous, and active; as, a smart young fellow; a smart workman, etc., conciding very nearly with the English sense of clever. The nearest approach to this in England is in such expressions as, he was smart (pungent or witty) in his reply, etc.; but smart and smartness, when applied to persons, more commonly refer to dress; as, a smart appearance; a smart gown, etc.

[Emphasis added]

"To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them."
-- Attributed to Richard Henry Lee

Return to “Good Word Suggestions”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests