ac·​ri·​mo·​ni·​ous | \ ˌa-krə-ˈmō-nē-əs How to pronounce acrimonious (audio) \

Definition of acrimonious

: angry and bitter : caustic, biting, or rancorous especially in feeling, language, or manner an acrimonious dispute

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Other Words from acrimonious

acrimoniously adverb
acrimoniousness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for acrimonious


acrid, bitter, embittered, hard, rancorous, resentful, sore



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Examples of acrimonious in a Sentence

Each man came out of their acrimonious 200-meter showdown on July 23 with an injured hamstring and a decidedly negative vibe. — Tim Layden, Sports Illustrated, 11 Sept. 2000 My May 19, 1967, memorandum to the president unleashed a storm of controversy.  … It led to tense and acrimonious Senate hearings that pitted me against the Joint Chiefs of Staff and generated rumors they intended to resign en masse. — Robert McNamara, In Retrospect, 1995 But considering the momentousness of the issue, the original Darwinian debate was far less acrimonious than might have been expected … — Gertrude Himmelfarb, American Scholar, Autumn 1981 We could tell, however, when debate became more acrimonious than professional, but this was from watching lawyers other than our father. — Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, 1960 He went through an acrimonious divorce. an acrimonious parting between the two former friends
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Recent Examples on the Web

She was abruptly fired from the White House in December, and according to some reports her departure was an acrimonious one. Emily Stewart, Vox, "Omarosa recorded John Kelly in the situation room — and she’s got the tapes to prove it," 12 Aug. 2018 At last year’s meeting, debate over a resolution to condemn the white supremacist alt-right — just as the convention condemned Planned Parenthood and gambling at that same meeting — proved surprisingly acrimonious before ultimately passing. Julie Zauzmer, Washington Post, "Pence will attend Southern Baptist Convention meeting amid turmoil over gender," 11 June 2018 But this uncoupling is turning out to be far more difficult and acrimonious than promised. William Booth, Washington Post, "Two years after Brexit vote, British leaders still tied in knots over how to leave Europe," 20 June 2018 Beyond the left-right divide lies an unruly and acrimonious diversity, with fault lines between secular Jews and religious Jews, ultra-Orthodox Jews who will serve in the military and those who will not, Arabs and Jews, settlers and everyone else. New York Times, "In Netanyahu’s Israel, the Divisiveness Is Now All About Him," 15 Feb. 2018 The property was put into a trust for his young son and later sold, becoming the subject of a series of acrimonious lawsuits. Alex Bhattacharji, Town & Country, "An Empty Lot Above Beverly Hills Is the Most Expensive Real Estate in the World," 17 Jan. 2019 The Wellspring Committee made the contributions to the Judicial Crisis Network, one of the most prominent groups that championed Kavanaugh’s acrimonious but ultimately successful bid to serve on the Supreme Court. Richard Lardner, The Seattle Times, "Pro-Kavanaugh group received millions from anonymous donors," 27 Nov. 2018 Alex Wong/Getty Images The debate over current Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s future in House leadership has turned acrimonious and, given the nature of the argument, personal. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "House Democrats don’t need a leader, they need someone to represent them on TV," 20 Nov. 2018 The move signals a return to the acrimonious relationship Manafort has had with the special counsel’s office since his indictment last year. Chad Day, The Seattle Times, "Mueller accuses Manafort of breaking plea agreement by lying," 27 Nov. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'acrimonious.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of acrimonious

1651, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for acrimonious

acrimony + -ous

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Statistics for acrimonious

Last Updated

27 May 2019

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Time Traveler for acrimonious

The first known use of acrimonious was in 1651

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behavior toward others

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