vituperation

noun

vi·​tu·​per·​a·​tion (ˌ)vī-ˌtü-pə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce vituperation (audio)
və-,
-ˈtyü-
1
: sustained and bitter railing and condemnation : vituperative utterance
2
: an act or instance of vituperating
Choose the Right Synonym for vituperation

abuse, vituperation, invective, obloquy, billingsgate mean vehemently expressed condemnation or disapproval.

abuse, the most general term, usually implies the anger of the speaker and stresses the harshness of the language.

scathing verbal abuse

vituperation implies fluent and sustained abuse.

a torrent of vituperation

invective implies a comparable vehemence but suggests greater verbal and rhetorical skill and may apply to a public denunciation.

blistering political invective

obloquy suggests defamation and consequent shame and disgrace.

subjected to obloquy and derision

billingsgate implies practiced fluency and variety of profane or obscene abuse.

directed a stream of billingsgate at the cabdriver

Examples of vituperation in a Sentence

their vituperation against the president Voters are tired of all the vituperation in this campaign.
Recent Examples on the Web On March 12, Nickels tweeted a notice of a scientific conference in Washington at which Peter Daszak, the head of a research funding organization who has long been the target of vituperation by lab-leak advocates, would appear on a panel. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, 20 Mar. 2024 The vituperation has spilled over into the Wellington protests. Ned Temko, The Christian Science Monitor, 17 Feb. 2022 What had whipped these imperious creative artists into a frenzy of dismissive vituperation was, in fact, something that most people have strong ideas about, nobody can define, and virtually everyone (besides that trio) seems to want: good taste. Daniel Mendelsohn, Town & Country, 20 Sep. 2021 Metaphorically likening Charlottesville to a rapist is a baseless vituperation against Charlottesville’s character, even more outlandish when the mayor herself is the vituperator. George Messenger, National Review, 30 Mar. 2021 Unflinchingly conservative, wildly partisan, bombastically self-promoting and larger than life, Limbaugh galvanized listeners for more than 30 years with his talent for vituperation and sarcasm. Matt Sedensky, Star Tribune, 17 Feb. 2021 Unflinchingly conservative, wildly partisan, bombastically self-promoting, and larger than life, Mr. Limbaugh galvanized listeners for more than 30 years with his talent for vituperation and sarcasm. Matt Sedensky, The Christian Science Monitor, 17 Feb. 2021 Americans rejected the radical vituperation proselytized on the fringes and chose the optimistic tradition of social justice associated with Pope John XXIII. Rahm Emanuel, WSJ, 28 Dec. 2020 Four years later, in a contest marked by grotesque vituperation, Jefferson beat Adams. Richard Brookhiser, New York Times, 31 Oct. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'vituperation.' 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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of vituperation was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near vituperation

Cite this Entry

“Vituperation.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/vituperation. Accessed 28 May. 2024.

Kids Definition

vituperation

noun
vi·​tu·​per·​a·​tion (ˌ)vī-ˌt(y)ü-pə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce vituperation (audio)
: lengthy harsh bitter criticism or abuse

More from Merriam-Webster on vituperation

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