1585–95; smack2 + -ing2

smackingly, adverb Unabridged


1 [smak]
a taste or flavor, especially a slight flavor distinctive or suggestive of something: The chicken had just a smack of garlic.
a trace, touch, or suggestion of something.
a taste, mouthful, or small quantity.
verb (used without object)
to have a taste, flavor, trace, or suggestion: Your politeness smacks of condescension.

before 1000; (noun) Middle English smacke, Old English smæc; cognate with Middle Low German smak, German Geschmack taste; (v.) Middle English smacken to perceive by taste, have a (specified) taste, derivative of the noun; compare German schmacken

1. savor. 2. hint. 4. taste, suggest.


2 [smak]
verb (used with object)
to strike sharply, especially with the open hand or a flat object.
to drive or send with a sharp, resounding blow or stroke: to smack a ball over a fence.
to close and open (the lips) smartly so as to produce a sharp sound, often as a sign of relish, as in eating.
to kiss with or as with a loud sound.
verb (used without object)
to smack the lips.
to collide, come together, or strike something forcibly.
to make a sharp sound as of striking against something.
a sharp, resounding blow, especially with something flat.
a smacking of the lips, as in relish or anticipation.
a resounding or loud kiss.
adverb Informal.
suddenly and violently: He rode smack up against the side of the house.
directly; straight: The street runs smack into the center of town.

1550–60; imitative; compare Dutch, Low German smakken, German (dial.) schmacken Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
smack1 (smæk)
1.  a smell or flavour that is distinctive though faint
2.  a distinctive trace or touch: the smack of corruption
3.  a small quantity, esp a mouthful or taste
vb (foll by of)
4.  to have the characteristic smell or flavour (of something): to smack of the sea
5.  to have an element suggestive (of something): his speeches smacked of bigotry
[Old English smæc; related to Old High German smoc, Icelandic smekkr a taste, Dutch smaak]

smack2 (smæk)
1.  (tr) to strike or slap smartly, with or as if with the open hand
2.  to strike or send forcibly or loudly or to be struck or sent forcibly or loudly
3.  to open and close (the lips) loudly, esp to show pleasure
4.  (tr) to kiss noisily
5.  a sharp resounding slap or blow with something flat, or the sound of such a blow
6.  a loud kiss
7.  a sharp sound made by the lips, as in enjoyment
8.  informal chiefly (Brit) have a smack at to attempt
9.  informal chiefly (Brit) smack in the eye a snub or setback
10.  directly; squarely
11.  with a smack; sharply and unexpectedly
[C16: from Middle Low German or Middle Dutch smacken, probably of imitative origin]

smack3 (smæk)
a slang word for heroin
[C20: perhaps from Yiddish schmeck]

smack4 (smæk)
1.  a sailing vessel, usually sloop-rigged, used in coasting and fishing along the British coast
2.  a fishing vessel equipped with a well for keeping the catch alive
[C17: from Low German smack or Dutch smak, of unknown origin]

smacking (ˈsmækɪŋ)
brisk; lively: a smacking breeze

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

"taste, flavor," now mainly in verbal figurative use smacks of ... (first attested 1595), from O.E. smæc, from P.Gmc. *smak- (cf. O.Fris. smek, Du. smaak, O.H.G. smac, Ger. Geschmack); probably related to Lith. smaguriai "dainties," smagus "pleasing." Meaning "a trace (of something)" is attested
from 1539.

"make a sharp noise with the lips," 1557, probably of imitative origin (see smack (v.2)). Meaning "a loud kiss" is recorded from 1604. With adverbial force, attested from 1782; extended form smack-dab is attested from 1892, Amer.Eng. colloquial.

"single-masted sailboat," 1611, probably from Du. or Low Ger. smak "sailboat," from smakken "to fling, dash" (see smack (v.2)), perhaps so-called from the sound made by its sails. Fr. semaque, Sp. zumaca, It. semacca probably are Gmc. borrowings.

"heroin," 1942, Amer.Eng. slang, probably an alteration of schmeck "a drug," esp. heroin (1932), from Yiddish schmeck "a sniff."

"to slap with the hand," 1835, from noun in this sense (c.1746), perhaps influenced by Low Ger. smacken "to strike, throw," which is likely of imitative origin (cf. Swed. smak "slap," M.L.G. smacken, Fris. smakke, Du. smakken "to fling down," Lith. smagiu "to strike, knock down, whip").
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

smack (smāk)

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences
Don't be surprised if there is considerable smacking of lips during a meal and burping at the end to show the meal tasted good.
No one speaks a word, but the smacking of lips and gnashing of teeth is almost comically loud.
But always that jerky twitching, always that smacking of rodent lips.
It took our offering and swung back to the beam, where it gobbled the fruit
  with loud slurping and smacking noises.
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