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[ih-ras-uh-buh l] /ɪˈræs ə bəl/
easily provoked to anger; very irritable:
an irascible old man.
characterized or produced by anger:
an irascible response.
Origin of irascible
1350-1400; Middle English irascibel < Late Latin īrāscibilis, equivalent to Latin īrāsc- (stem of īrāscī to grow angry; equivalent to īr(a) ire + -ā- theme vowel + -sc- inchoative suffix + infinitive ending; see -esce) + -ibilis -ible
Related forms
irascibility, irascibleness, noun
irascibly, adverb
unirascibility, noun
unirascible, adjective
Can be confused
erasable, irascible.
1, 2. testy, touchy, peppery, choleric, short-tempered. See irritable.
1, 2. calm, even-tempered. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for irascibly
Historical Examples
  • But it makes a fellow uncomfortable to look at you, Pavel shouted, irascibly.

  • Youll go insane if you keep this up, he once said, irascibly.

  • "The thing is done, however," returned the baron, irascibly.

    Debit and Credit Gustav Freytag
  • "Had a right to listen if you wanted to," declared Hayward, irascibly.

    The Copy-Cat and Other Stories Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
  • "The service in this house is very bad," she said aloud and irascibly, getting up to ring again.

    The Benefactress Elizabeth Beauchamp
  • On one occasion he looked into his son's room, saw him feverishly busy at his desk and exclaimed, irascibly, "Damn the verses!"

    The Fiction Factory John Milton Edwards
  • "He can't be anybody but himself," retorted Mr. Jones, irascibly, deeming the question superfluous.

    Elster's Folly Mrs. Henry Wood
  • "You've been told before not to butt in to grownup talk," his uncle reproved him irascibly.

  • "No, don't put it there," irascibly, as the clerk laid the card on top of a pile of letters.

    The Red Seal Natalie Sumner Lincoln
British Dictionary definitions for irascibly


easily angered; irritable
showing irritability: an irascible action
Derived Forms
irascibility, irascibleness, noun
irascibly, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Late Latin īrascibilis, from Latin īra anger
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for irascibly



late 14c., from Middle French irascible (12c.) and directly from Late Latin irascibilis, from Latin irasci "be angry, be in a rage," from ira "anger" (see ire).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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