Definition : sharply or bitingly critical, sarcastic, or ironic in temper, mood, or tone
Acerb and acerbic first appear as adjectives for sharp and biting words or remarks in the 19th century. Acerb, however, had been around since the 17th century, describing sour foods and flavors. Acerb and acerbic ultimately come from French acerbe and Latin acerbus, both of which are adjectives meaning variously "harsh," "sour," "bitter," or "unpleasant."
She suffered greatly from the effects of lupus, which would eventually end her life at age 39, and in 1958 she made a pilgrimage to Lourdes, famed for its healing miracles. The skeptical [Flannery O’Connor] describes the French town as a "beautiful little village completely defaced by religious junk shops" and the healing waters as a stewpot of viruses. … Yet despite the acerb comments, "she does acknowledge quietly that it may have extended her life to finish that novel, 'The Violent Bear It Away,'" said [Benjamin B. Alexander].
— Bo Emerson, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 29 Oct. 2019
After a successful seven-year run as the host of E!'s top-rated "Chelsea Lately," Handler launched an all-new talk show for Netflix in May 2016. "Chelsea" was the first of its kind for the global on-demand generation and tackled today's tough issues with the same acerbic wit and fearless curiosity fans know and love.
— John Atashian, The Middletown (Connecticut) Press, 8 Apr. 2020