(plural shmoon), comic strip creature, a fabulous animal ready to fulfill man's wants, 1948; invented by U.S. cartoonist Al Capp (Alfred Caplin, 1909-1979); the name perhaps based on schmoe. It was a U.S. fad for a couple of years after its debut.
powerful explosive consisting of a mixture of nitroglycerine with an absorbent, 1867, from Swedish dynamit, coined 1867 by its inventor, Swedish chemist Alfred Nobel (1833-1896), from Greek dynamis "power" (see dynamic (adj.)) + -ite (2). Figurative sense of "something potentially dangerous" is from 1922. Positive sense of "dynamic and excellent" by mid-1960s, perhaps originally African-American vernacular.