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afterwit (countable and uncountable, plural afterwits)
- Wisdom which comes after the event.
- 1595, Robert Southwell, “Losse in Delayes”, in Saint Peters Complaynt With Other Poems, London: Gabriel Cawood, page 50:
- After wits are dearely bought, / Let thy fore-wit guide thy thought.
- 1692, Roger L’Estrange (translator), Fables of Æsop, London: R. Sare et al., Fable 162, “A Nightingale and a Bat,”
- There’s No Recalling of what’s Gone and Past; so that After-Wit comes too Late when the Mischief is Done.
- 1760, Laurence Sterne, chapter 12, in The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman, volume 1, page 63:
- Trust me, dear Yorick, this unwary pleasantry of thine will sooner or later bring thee into scrapes and difficulties, which no after-wit can extricate thee out of.
- The lack of forethought.
- Antonym: forewit
- A good comeback, retort one thinks of only after the end of discussion or after leaving a social gathering.
- Synonyms: l'esprit de l'escalier, staircase wit, (neologism) retrotort