I was wondering if "firsthand smoker" or " first-hand smoker" is a standard formal English or I should use "active smoker".

When I looked up "firsthand smoke", "first-hand smoke", "firsthand smoking" and "first-hand smoking" on Google Ngram, only "firsthand smoke" is shown up on the results. However, there are many websites using the collocations I mentioned above when I looked them up on the Internet.

I also would like to ask why at least "firsthand smoking" is not used in books?

Oxford Dictionary shows only "first-hand" without any reference to smoke.

  • Why are you trying to write this phrase? I have never heard it. Anyway the definition you gave does not follow what you want it to mean. There is a "second-hand smoke", but that is a different matter. – user3169 Dec 27 '16 at 20:56

"Firsthand smoker" would be redundant. We would just say "smoker".

I gather you are confused by the use of the phrase "secondhand smoke", to talk about the health problems of people who are not themselves smokers, but who regularly inhale tobacco smoke (from living in a household with a smoker). The use of this term is relatively recent (only about the past 20 years), while "smoker" is much older (at least 200 years). Ngram


The descriptor


refers to the person doing something.

I don't have first hand experience, I've only seen it on TV.

"Firsthand smoker" would refer to the smoker themself, but the description is rarely used.

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