adj. clev·er·er, clev·er·est
a. Mentally quick and original; bright: a clever student.
b. Skilled at accomplishing things, especially with the hands: a clever carpenter.
c. Crafty; cunning: "a hard-working kid who rose from poverty, only to be duped by rich, clever bankers" (Jeff Goodell).
a. Exhibiting ingenuity or imagination; creative or artful: a clever experiment.
b. Witty; amusing: an evening of clever repartee.
c. Characterized by cunning or shrewdness: clever manipulation of public opinion.
3. New England Easily managed; docile: "Oxen must be pretty clever to be bossed around the way they are" (Dialect Notes).
4. Chiefly Southern US Good-natured; amiable.
[Middle English cliver; akin to East Frisian klifer, klüfer; see gleubh- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.