smarmy's Word of the Day



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The Word of the Day for July 10 is:

smarmy \SMAHR-mee\ (adjective)
*1 : revealing or marked by a smug, ingratiating, or false
earnestness
2 : of low sleazy taste or quality

Example sentence:
"I was so disappointed to hear you didn't get that
promotion," said Kit insincerely, using a smarmy tone of voice
that made me fume.

Did you know?
Something "smarmy" will often ooze with self-satisfaction
and insincerity. Much like synonyms "unctuous" and "slick," it
has a history that starts with a meaning of literal slipperiness
or oiliness. The verb "smarm" appeared in English in the mid-
19th century. Etymologists don't know where it came from, but
they do know that it meant "to smear," "to gush," or sometimes
"to make smooth or oily." A few decades later, use of "smarm"
was extended to sometimes mean "to use flattery." The adjective
"smarmy" appeared in the early 20th century. At first meaning
"insincerely flattering" or "smug," it later took on an
additional meaning: "sleazy."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

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