Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

barbed

play
adjective \ˈbärbd\

Simple Definition of barbed

  • : having a sharp point that sticks out and backward from a larger point : having a barb

  • : expressing criticism in an unkind and often clever way

Full Definition of barbed

  1. 1 :  having barbs

  2. 2 :  characterized by pointed and biting criticism or sarcasm <barbed witticisms>

Examples of barbed

  1. The candidates exchanged barbed comments during the debate.

  2. <barbed satire on American academia>



1611

First Known Use of barbed

1611



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up barbed? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 8, 2016

to clear from accusation or blame

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image1037863653

Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?

spindrift kittly-benders duvet pince-nez
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ