1
: having barbs
2
: characterized by pointed and biting criticism or sarcasm
barbed witticisms

Examples of barbed in a Sentence

The candidates exchanged barbed comments during the debate. barbed satire on American academia
Recent Examples on the Web Behind barbed wire and watchtowers, the ancient treasures remained there for decades, despite a few armed break-ins over the years. Stephanie Yang, Los Angeles Times, 3 Apr. 2024 This is a problem that is not going to be solved by putting guards on the border or barbed wire. Albinson Linares, NBC News, 3 Apr. 2024 Biden’s barbed references to Trump were all about the former President’s offenses to American democracy. Susan B. Glasser, The New Yorker, 14 Mar. 2024 Director Jonathan Glazer leans heavily on the chilling sounds from inside the camp that echo incessantly as the Höss family build their dream home, which sits on the other side of the concentration camp’s barbed wire fence. Alli Rosenbloom, CNN, 4 Mar. 2024 Almost 4 feet tall and nearly 8 feet wide, the plane is wrapped in a strict grid of barbed wire. Christopher Knight, Los Angeles Times, 15 Mar. 2024 Authorities have barricaded highways leading to New Delhi with cement blocks, metal containers, barbed wire and iron spikes to prevent the farmers from entering the capital. Rishi Lekhi and Ashok Sharma, Quartz, 14 Mar. 2024 Dorie Ladner was 11 months younger than Emmett Till, an African American who was 14 when he was lynched in the Mississippi Delta in 1955, his mutilated body tethered with barbed wire to a cotton gin fan and submerged in the Tallahatchie River. Emily Langer, Washington Post, 13 Mar. 2024 Today, Al-Hol’s fifty thousand residents are grouped into sectors divided by barbed wire; to walk from one to the next can take half an hour. Anand Gopal, The New Yorker, 11 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'barbed.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1611, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of barbed was in 1611

Dictionary Entries Near barbed

Cite this Entry

“Barbed.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/barbed. Accessed 16 Apr. 2024.

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