Hi Fface - there are people around here other than me you know
1. To mean someone is able to learn and understand things quickly. He learnt to sit and stay in five minutes. He's a very clever dog!
2. To mean someone is good at coming up with solutions to problems and working things out. It was really clever of him to think of using superglue. It would never have occurred to me in a thousand years.
3. To mean someone is able to use their intelligence to get what they want, especially in a slightly dishonest way.
I'm not convinced by this one. I would agree with...
"To mean someone is able to use their intelligence to get what they want"
and it may be "in a dishonest way" - but I don't like the "especially". For me, this would come under (2) above. Eg: It was really clever how she convinced David that he wanted to do exactly what she had decided - and to make him believe it was his own idea.
This might be "cunning" or "manipulative" but I'm not sure about dishonest. And isn't it just another example of coming up with a solution to a problem? Your problem is that someone might not do what you want - and the solution you find is the way you convince them.
So I'd say yes to 1 and 2 (though even there I think there's an overlap) but 3 for me is part of 2.
I'd also point to the ironic use. When someone does something stupid, we often say... He's got a promotion board tomorrow and today he goes and tells his boss he's an idiot??? Well, that was really clever of him.