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    #1

    Question history of 'smarty pants'

    what is the historical context for the idiom 'smarty pants'?

  1. Sensible's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: history of 'smarty pants'

    Google is your friend.

  2. Ouisch's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: history of 'smarty pants'

    According to http://mrsmartypants.com/whois.html:

    The origin of the term "Smarty Pants" derives from "smarty," which first surfaced in a California magazine in 1861--"Juvenile smarties are interesting even to a vagabond" was the name of the story. The term "smarty" was also used in Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain in 1876.

    The first use of "smarty pants" seems to be in 1941 by B. Schulenberg in What makes Sammy Run? where he uses the phrase "one of those Vassar smartypants." The next reference is in 1953 by M. Dickens in No More Meadows, vi. 266 in the phrase, "He jumped right in with his slick talk...That smarty pants!" In 1967, N. Marsh in Death at Dolphin viii. 199: "Hawkins, Mr. Smartypants has a little chat.

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