Definition of


  1. (noun, attribute) the property of having a harsh unpleasant taste
  2. (noun, cognition) the taste experience when quinine or coffee is taken into the mouth
  3. (noun, food) English term for a dry sharp-tasting ale with strong flavor of hops (usually on draft)
  4. (verb, perception) make bitter
  5. (adj, all) marked by strong resentment or cynicism
    bitter about the divorce
  6. (adj, all) proceeding from or exhibiting great hostility or animosity
    bitter enemies
  7. (adj, all) expressive of severe grief or regret
  8. (adj, all) causing a sharply painful or stinging sensation; used especially of cold
    a biting wind
  9. (adj, all) harsh or corrosive in tone
    a barrage of acid comments
    her acrid remarks make her many enemies
    bitter words
    blistering criticism
    caustic jokes about political assassination, talk-show hosts and medical ethics
    a sulfurous denunciation
    a vitriolic critique
  10. (adj, all) causing a sharp and acrid taste experience
  11. (adj, all) very difficult to accept or bear
    a bitter sorrow
  12. (adv, all) extremely and sharply
    bitter cold

via WordNet, Princeton University

Origin of the word Bitter

  1. O.E. biter "bitter, sharp, cutting, angry, cruel, embittered," from P.Gmc. *bitras- (cf. O.S. bitar, O.N. bitr, Du. bitter, O.H.G. bittar, Ger. bitter, Goth. baitrs "bitter"), from PIE base *bheid- "to split" (cf. O.E. bitan "bite;" see bite). Evidently the meaning drifted in prehistoric times from "biting, o… more

via Online Etymology Dictionary, ©2001 Douglas Harper

Note: If you're looking to improve your vocabulary right now, we highly recommend Ultimate Vocabulary Software.

Word of the Moment


an instance of boastful talk