mordancy

noun

mor·​dan·​cy ˈmȯr-dᵊn(t)-sē How to pronounce mordancy (audio)
1
: a biting and caustic quality of style : incisiveness
2
: a sharply critical or bitter quality of thought or feeling : harshness

Example Sentences

the surprising mordancy with which the two physicians contested each other's claim to having discovered an effective vaccine for polio
Recent Examples on the Web The gray-tint, cross-hatched drawings evoke George Cruikshank and Samuel Palmer, but the mordancy is vintage Sendak. The Week Staff, The Week, 17 Oct. 2022

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

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1656, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of mordancy was circa 1656

Dictionary Entries Near mordancy

Cite this Entry

“Mordancy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/mordancy. Accessed 3 Dec. 2022.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!


Commonly Confused Words Quiz

  • vector image of a face with thought expression
  • I went to the ______ store to buy a birthday card.
Name That Thing

You know what it looks like… but what is it called?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ