follow Dictionary.com

Stories We Like: A Guide to the Comma

smithereens

[smith-uh-reenz] /ˌsmɪð əˈrinz/
plural noun
1.
small pieces; bits:
broken into smithereens.
Also, smithers
[smith -erz] /ˈsmɪð ərz/ (Show IPA)
.
Origin
1820-1830
1820-30; dial. smithers (< ?) + Hiberno-English -een diminutive suffix (< Irish -ín)
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples for smithereens
  • Hold the egg in your hand so you don't smash it to smithereens on the table what with all the pressure of the poking.
  • The room and its computerized controls had been blown to smithereens.
  • Mariners have long known of and feared the freak wave that can smash ocean-going vessels to smithereens.
  • They would have blasted the island and its inhabitants to smithereens using nuclear weapons.
  • Both presumptions have of course been reduced to smithereens by now.
  • The other is to physically shred the drive, smashing it to smithereens.
  • Once she finds it, she quits acting girlish and blows whoever happens to be bothering her to smithereens.
  • Nothing much was left of her but charred smithereens.
  • These games appealed primarily to males with their focus on racking up scores or blasting an alien to smithereens.
  • In seven minutes, the entire planet is about to be smashed to smithereens by a comet.
British Dictionary definitions for smithereens

smithereens

/ˌsmɪðəˈriːnz/
plural noun
1.
little shattered pieces or fragments
Word Origin
C19: from Irish Gaelic smidirīn, from smiodar
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for smithereens
n.

"small fragments," 1810, smiddereens, from Irish smidirin, diminutive of smiodar "fragment," perhaps with diminutive ending as in Colleen.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for smithereens

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for smithereens

16
0
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with smithereens