Meaning of “clever” in the English Dictionary

"clever" in British English

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cleveradjective

uk /ˈklev.ər/ us /ˈklev.ɚ/

A1 having or showing the ability to learn and understand things quickly and easily:

Judy has never been very clever, but she tries hard.
UK Fiona is very clever at physics.
Charlie has a clever idea/plan for getting us out of our present difficulties.

skilful:

My mother is very clever with her hands.

B1 well-designed:

I've got a clever little gadget for opening jars.

disapproving showing intelligence, but not sincere, polite, or serious:

That's enough clever talk, young lady.

More examples

  • Did you paint this yourself? You clever girl!
  • He's always telling everybody how clever his children are.
  • Edith may seem a bit crazy, but she's quite clever really.
  • How clever of you to buy chocolate chip cookies - they're my favourites.
  • The building relies on clever design rather than on ornament for its impressive effect.

(Definition of “clever” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"clever" in American English

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cleveradjective

us /ˈklev·ər/

having or showing a quick intelligence in doing something or in persuading people to do something:

It was certainly a clever ad and got a lot of attention.
cleverly
adverb us /ˈklev·ər·li/

Did you notice how she cleverly avoided answering most of my questions?

(Definition of “clever” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)