wit·​ti·​cism ˈwi-tə-ˌsi-zəm How to pronounce witticism (audio)
: a cleverly witty and often biting or ironic remark

Examples of witticism in a Sentence

a collection of famous witticisms a drama critic who is best remembered for his biting witticisms
Recent Examples on the Web The samples offered are purple and banal, hardly living up to Gabriel García Márquez’s witticism about similar fabrications. Jesse Green, New York Times, 6 Feb. 2024 And there's no better way to lift everyone's spirits than with a few Valentine's Day jokes, quips, and witticisms. Fiona Tapp, Parents, 24 Jan. 2024 Back details and visual witticisms subtly delivered more of the same. Laird Borrelli-Persson, Vogue, 11 Jan. 2024 The movie is at its best when Pike and Grant are spouting witticisms and drolly tone-deaf reaffirmations of their characters’ obscene privilege. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, 3 Sep. 2019 Most major college coaches would deem such access unthinkable, but Blair clearly relishes the chance to espouse A&M women’s basketball and share his folksy witticisms. Brad Townsend, Dallas News, 11 Aug. 2023 Black Twitter had other unique characteristics: People in the network were likely to follow one another, creating a dialogue that catapulted memes, clapbacks, hashtags and witticisms onto Twitter’s Trending Topics list. Elizabeth Dwoskin, Washington Post, 6 Aug. 2023 All of which would be more than enough to occupy your attention even if the movie slowed its tempo, attenuated its gags or paused to give each actor more than a drolly robotic witticism or two. Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times, 15 June 2023 That’s a classic, lukewarm, tension-defusing witticism, and everyone smiles politely. Sam Anderson, New York Times, 3 June 2023

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

Word History


witty + -cism (as in criticism)

First Known Use

1651, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of witticism was in 1651

Dictionary Entries Near witticism

Cite this Entry

“Witticism.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/witticism. Accessed 24 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


wit·​ti·​cism ˈwit-ə-ˌsiz-əm How to pronounce witticism (audio)
: a witty saying

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