Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A person regarded as annoyingly self-assertive, especially for making impudent displays of knowledge.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun One who is given to obnoxious or insolent humor; a wise guy.
  • noun One who is pretentious about their own cleverness or knowledge; a know-it-all.
  • noun One who is obnoxiously self-assured; a show off.
  • noun rare A well-dressed person.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun an upstart who makes conceited, sardonic, insolent comments

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Perhaps after Aleck, Hoag, 19th-century American confidence man and thief.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Aleck is a nickname for Alexander. The phrase "smart aleck" is possibly derived from the name Aleck Hoag, a 19th century con man and thief.

Examples

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