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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Shrewdness'

Shrewdness Meaning and Definition from WordNet (r) 2.0
    shrewdness n : intelligence manifested by being astute (as in business dealings) [syn: astuteness, perspicacity, perspicaciousness]
Shrewdness Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Shrewd \Shrewd\, a. [Compar. Shrewder; superl. Shrewdest.] [Originally the p. p. of shrew, v.t.]
  1. Inclining to shrew; disposing to curse or scold; hence, vicious; malicious; evil; wicked; mischievous; vexatious; rough; unfair; shrewish. [Obs.] --Chaucer. [Egypt] hath many shrewd havens, because of the great rocks that ben strong and dangerous to pass by. --Sir J. Mandeville. Every of this happy number That have endured shrewd days and nights with us. --Shak.
  2. Artful; wily; cunning; arch. These women are shrewd tempters with their tongues. --Shak.
  3. Able or clever in practical affairs; sharp in business; astute; sharp-witted; sagacious; keen; as, a shrewd observer; a shrewd design; a shrewd reply. Professing to despise the ill opinion of mankind creates a shrewd suspicion that we have deserved it. --Secker. Syn: Keen; critical; subtle; artful; astute; sagacious; discerning; acute; penetrating. Usage: Shrewd, Sagacious. One who is shrewd is keen to detect errors, to penetrate disguises, to foresee and guard against the selfishness of others. Shrewd is a word of less dignity than sagacious, which implies a comprehensive as well as penetrating mind, whereas shrewd does not. -- Shrewd"ly, adv. -- Shrewd"ness, n.
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