9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[sav-ee] /ˈsæv i/ Informal.
verb (used with object), verb (used without object), savvied, savvying.
to know; understand.
Also, savviness. practical understanding; shrewdness or intelligence; common sense:
a candidate who seemed to have no political savvy.
adjective, savvier, savviest.
shrewdly informed; experienced and well-informed; canny.
Origin of savvy
1775-85; < Spanish sabe, present 3rd singular of saber to know < Latin sapere to be wise; see sapient Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for savvy
  • All this suggests that, with a little marketing savvy, the possibilities for celebrating the unfamous are limitless.
  • savvy theater owners always knew the key to success: adapt or die.
  • Well, the latest research is in, and the answer is a resounding no: boys are not more math savvy.
  • In your research paper, you come across as pretty savvy with regard to the terminology and technology of information.
  • It will be shown in this election whether or not it pays to be social networking savvy.
  • If you really are as computer-savvy as you say then you already know that.
  • Instead, what others would see in your purchase of an iPod was the indication that you were a savvy digital music owner.
  • For any fashion savvy individual, these products are prized possessions.
  • College presidents appear to be more tech-savvy than members of the public are.
  • But philanthropists say it is also a testament to savvy college leaders and smart fund raisers.
British Dictionary definitions for savvy


verb -vies, -vying, -vied
to understand or get the sense of (an idea, etc)
no savvy, I don't (he doesn't, etc) understand
adjective -vier, -viest
(mainly US) shrewd; well-informed
Word Origin
C18: corruption of Spanish sabe(usted) (you) know, from saber to know, from Latin sapere to be wise
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for savvy

1785, "practical sense, intelligence;" also a verb, "to know, to understand;" West Indies pidgin borrowing of French savez(-vous)? "do you know?" or Spanish sabe (usted) "you know," both from Vulgar Latin *sapere, from Latin sapere "be wise, be knowing" (see sapient). The adjective is first recorded 1905, from the noun. Related: Savvily; savviness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for savvy



: a very savvy lady


Comprehension; intelligence; brains, smarts: He's a guy with much savvy (1785+)


To understand; know; grasp: I'm the honcho here, savvy? (1785+)

[fr West Indian pidgin fr Spanish sabe usted, ''do you know?''; modern use influenced by French savez, ''you know'']

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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