smart aleck

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smart aleck

One who makes jokes and uses sarcasm in an attempt to seem witty, but instead is deemed annoying. Also seen as "smart alec." I'd had enough of that smart aleck's wisecracks, so I left the party early.
See also: aleck, smart

smart aleck

An impudent or obnoxiously self-assertive individual, a wise guy, as in New teachers often have a hard time coping with the smart alecks in their classes. This expression, dating from the mid-1800s, probably alluded to a person of this description who was named Alec or Alexander, but his identity has been lost.
See also: aleck, smart

a smart alec


a smart aleck

A smart alec or a smart aleck is someone who is very clever and who is often able to answer questions in a clever way. Note: People sometimes spell `alec' and `aleck' with capital initials, as names. They've got some smart alec of a lawyer from London to oppose bail. Note: You can use smart alec and smart aleck before a noun. I hate smart-aleck kids who talk like dictionaries. Note: You use this expression to show that you find someone annoying. Note: Alec or Aleck is a shortened form of the name Alexander.
See also: alec, smart

smart alec (or aleck)

a person considered irritating because they know a great deal or always have a clever answer to a question.
From the male personal name Alec, a short form of Alexander.
See also: alec, smart

a ˈsmart alec/aleck

(informal, disapproving) a person who tries to show that they are cleverer than everyone else: Some smart alec wrote in to say that the last edition of the newspaper contained 37 printing errors.
See also: alec, aleck, smart
References in periodicals archive ?
While I felt the story could have been fleshed out a bit more (for example, the character's seemingly ever-present bulimia is hardly mentioned in the book's second half), I liked it, particularly the character's smart-aleck, wise-girl tone.
Smart-aleck academics and clever-dick BBC types may scoff.
Spider-Man was a smart-aleck outsider who enraged the establishment newspaper run by cigar-chomping J.
From a gentle tip-tap like the murmuring patter of spring rain to thunder-crack jumps and the smart-aleck snap-slap-pop of a firecracker, Glover's feet tossed like tassels, and the sounds alternately soothed and then sparked the senses.
In my youth I had a smart-aleck pal who claimed "laws are made to be broken.
Ford plays a grumpy cargo pilot making a living in the tropics who seizes the opportunity to make a fast buck out of smart-aleck New Yorker Heche.
These collisions with the everyday, often in dejected circumstances, reflect the quotidian reality of Italy's disaffected youth: images, objects, performances provide glimpses of the McJob-induced boredom of Italy's Generation X and the smart-aleck counterculture it breeds.
Just think back to the last time you heard a smart-aleck translation of the acronym.
Leave 'em like that" was my typically smart-aleck response.
During the 1980s, he created a rag-tag network of skinheads, soccer hooligans, and smart-aleck youth who paraded around in boots, brown shorts, and flak jackets adorned with illegal swastikas.
I've had it for a long time, and it's not one of those smart-aleck questions ("Well, then, tell me, Ashley, what do you do for a living?
He becomes Bearing's shield and fortress, walling her off from humanity-and woe to the smart-aleck student who dares to crack that wall by asking, 'Why does he make it more complicated when it's really simple?
When I was about 15 years old I had a smart-aleck thing I liked to say whenever anyone brought up the subject of marriage: When and if I ever get married, there are only two circumstances in which I would consider changing my nameif my husband-to-be's last name gave me a nice drag queen-esque pun to go by (Rachel Riots, for example, or Rachel Tension), or if I was going to get a title, like I'd become one of the Countess of Grantham or Dutchess of Devonshire, or something like that.
Barbra was so sweet, reasonable and warm that one smart-aleck I know said, "And the Emmy goes to.