Definition of vitriol
1 : something felt to resemble vitriol especially in caustic quality; especially : virulence of feeling or of speech
2a : a sulfate of any of various metals (such as copper, iron, or zinc); especially : a glassy hydrate of such a sulfateb : oil of vitriol
vitriolicplay \ˌvi-trē-ˈä-lik\ adjective
Examples of vitriol in a Sentence
His speech was full of political vitriol.
a film critic noted for the vitriol and sometimes outright cruelty of his pronouncements
Recent Examples of vitriol from the Web
Heater's grandson, Fletcher, was among those who came to the aid of two girls who were the target of Jeremy Joseph Christian's racist vitriol on a MAX train last Friday, according to police and witnesses.
Veterans of Sadiq Khan’s victory in the London mayoral campaign last year say vitriol directed at him by the Conservatives simply galvanized his supporters.
Some of the vitriol was directed at two girls, one of whom was wearing an Islamic headscarf, police have said.
The stuff DeNiro offered up follows the same pattern on college and university campuses across the country that promotes civil disobedience through vocal vitriol.
It’s 600 miles’ worth of vitriol just waiting to be discovered.
Still, the level of vitriol on the Internet reached a level that shocked Steven Fu, a parent who bridged both sides of the district’s schools, with children at the charter and the high school.
Trump's visit to Saudi Arabia, the birthplace of Islam, gave Trump a chance to square US government policy with the vitriol of his campaign on Islam and terrorism.
But when the vitriol rises and each side demonizes the other — re-writing history and deliberately casting the opposite party in the role of enemy — this is when those of us in the middle just start screening our calls.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'vitriol'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of vitriol
Middle English, from Anglo-French vitriole, from Medieval Latin vitriolum, alteration of Late Latin vitreolum, neuter of vitreolus glassy, from Latin vitreus vitreous
First Known Use: 14th century
VITRIOL Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of vitriol for English Language Learners
: harsh and angry words
Seen and Heard
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