clever

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Related to cleverest: call for

too (something) by half

Far too something; more something than is necessary. Used in the form, "too (something) by half." Primarily heard in UK. Liam is too clever by half, winning every debate he gets into. That child is too noisy by half!
See also: by, half

too clever by half

Too contrived or arrogant in one's cleverness or intelligence, to the point of being irritating to others. Primarily heard in UK. I think every adolescent goes through a stage where they become too clever by half and begin to think of themselves as the only person who has things figured out. The phones people use these days are all too clever by half—I can barely even use them to make phone calls!
See also: by, clever, half

clever clogs

A light-hearted or humorous way to refer to an intelligent or clever person. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. He's such a clever clogs. There is no question he can't answer.
See also: clever, clog

clever boots

A light-hearted or humorous way to refer to an intelligent or clever person. Primarily heard in Australia. Judy's such a clever boots. She solved the puzzle in 30 seconds.
See also: boot, clever

clever dick

A person who irritates others by constantly trying to prove their superior intelligence. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. Don't be such a clever dick! It's not necessary to correct everyone's grammar all of the time.
See also: clever, dick

as (something) as they come

Said of someone or something that displays a trait or characteristic to the utmost degree. Bryce is as talented as they come. Once you see him on stage, you'll agree. These strawberries are as fresh as they come. They were literally just picked!
See also: come

box clever

To act skillfully and cunningly or deceitfully to achieve a desired outcome. Primarily heard in UK. The principal is already on to you, so you're going to have to box clever to avoid a suspension.
See also: box, clever

be too clever by half

To be too contrived or arrogant in one's cleverness or intelligence, to the point of being irritating to others. Primarily heard in UK. I think every adolescent goes through a stage of being too clever by half, thinking of themselves as the only person who has things really figured out. The phones people use these days are all too clever by half—I can barely even use them to make phone calls!
See also: by, clever, half

none too

Not much, not very, or not at all. We got there none too early. My husband could use some project to work on; he's been none too busy since he lost his job.
See also: none

(as) clever as a wagonload of monkeys

Impish or mischievous. ("Cartload" can be used instead of "wagonload.") Primarily heard in UK. Don't let those boys sit together—they're as clever as a wagonload of monkeys.
See also: clever, monkey, of, wagonload

be boxing clever

To be acting skillfully and cunningly or deceitfully to achieve a desired outcome. Primarily heard in UK. I wasn't boxing clever at the time, so it was easy for the headmaster to see that I had broken the rules.
See also: boxing, clever

none too something

not very something; not at all something. The towels in the bathroom were none too clean. It was none too warm in their house.
See also: none

none too

Also, not too. Not very, as in The application arrived none too soon, or I'm afraid this secretary is not too smart, or He was here not too long ago. The first usage was first recorded in 1885; the variant dates from about 1920. Also see not all that.
See also: none

be boxing clever

BRITISH
If someone is boxing clever, they are being very clever and careful in the way they behave in a difficult situation, so that they can get an advantage for themselves. By boxing clever with your personal tax allowances you could save £900 a year.
See also: boxing, clever

too clever by half

If you describe a person or their actions as too clever by half, you mean that they are too clever, in a way that you do not like or in a way that causes problems for them. His many admirers describe him as clever: his enemies as too clever by half. You had to tell the press, didn't you? Too clever by half. Note: Other adjectives are sometimes used instead of clever. He was stylish, angry, and too cool by half.
See also: by, clever, half

box clever

act so as to outwit someone. British informal
1950 Alexander Baron There's No Home If you box clever and keep your mouth shut…you ought to be able to count on a suspended sentence.
See also: box, clever

too clever by half

annoyingly proud of your intelligence or skill. informal
See also: by, clever, half

box ˈclever

(British English, informal) act in a clever way to get what you want, sometimes tricking and deceiving somebody: Suzie realized that she had to box clever. She had to let Adam think she trusted him.
See also: box, clever

ˈclever Dick

(also ˈclever clogs) (British English, informal, disapproving) a person who thinks that they are always right or that they know everything: Come on then, clever clogs, tell us the answer! ♢ (ironic) Some clever Dick has parked his car so close to mine I can’t get out!
See also: clever, dick

as ˌclever, ˌstupid, etc. as they ˈcome

very clever, stupid, etc: He’s just about as mean as they come. He wouldn’t even lend me a couple of dollars!
See also: come

too clever, quick, etc. by ˈhalf

(British English, informal, disapproving) much too clever, quick, etc: That boy is too charming by half — he can get you to do anything he wants.I don’t like her at all — she’s too clever by half.
See also: by, half

none too ˈclever, ˈhappy, ˈquickly, etc.

not at all clever, quickly, etc: The driver was none too pleased about having to leave so early.Her chances of winning are none too good, I’m afraid.
See also: none
References in periodicals archive ?
If the torrent of stupidities unleashed by the 'cleverest Greek in the world', was anything to go by, I am sure that if they were to measure my intelligence I would be declared the cleverest Greek in the universe.
Which is why lumping the cleverest kids into classes alongside the not so clever in the same underperforming comprehensives was always going to be catastrophic - for ALL children
This cute story of life under the sea tells seahorse facts--males become pregnant, they use camouflage to hide--wrapped in the tale of the littlest one being the cleverest one.
The smartest animals on the planet; extraordinary tales of the natural world's cleverest creatures.
Kerr sets out to distinguish thoughts and actions that are intelligent for a human to pursue from those that even the cleverest of any other species (his house cat, in this case), by considering intelligence as an phenomenon of information.
Duncan, whose recent roles include playing former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, plays the Doctor's cleverest and most strong-minded companion yet - Adelaide.
London, Jan 26 (ANI): Ainan Cawley, an eight-year-old British prodigy, is thought to be world's cleverest children.
the cleverest and most stylish boys embrace their man-child looks with gusto, growing long and wild Kate Bush hair and waltzing around 100 friendship bracelets-deep like they ought to be cast in a Gus Van Sant movie" It's as if you told someone in their thirties to write as if they were a seventeen-year-old pretending to be older.
You have dined out for far too long as a poor persecuted minority when, in fact, you possess great gifts and have behind you people of considerable wealth and some of the cleverest children in the country to teach.
but knowing how all the instruments can disagree and cleverest hopes
I swore to my friends that this was the cleverest dog I'd ever seen (next to my border collie Megan, who passed away earlier this year).
Even the cleverest of bombmakers, it seems, is now forced to run the gamut not only of state of the art detection techniques, but also our greater understanding of the laws of nature, laws by which all of us are governed.
Send us your cleverest, your funniest, your prettiest work.
Philip was one of the cleverest people I have come across in my life--clever in every way and profoundly knowledgeable: a latter-day Renaissance man.