To be savvy is to be wise or intelligent, but that's such a strange and non-Germanic word. Where does it come from? The origin is surprisingly interesting: it is most likely from the French question savez-vous?, which literally means "do you know?". Alternately, it could be from Spanish sabe?, with the same translation. Somebody savvy would be somebody who knows- therefore the word. Either way, this goes back to the Latin root sapere, "to be wise". In Proto-Italic, wisdom had a lot to do with discerning, so as sapio, it meant "discern", however you discern tastes, so before that it meant "taste". This is why, as the Proto-Indo-European root sep, the word also meant "taste". Usage of the word savvy has been exponentially increasing since 1980, and, with that, I can conclude that we now know the way.
Adam Aleksic is a 217-month-old, 2800-ounce high school senior with disturbing interests in etymology, vexillology, geography, board games, and law. Adam is anxiously awaiting his college rejections and loves writing about himself in the third person.
The Etymology Nerd