[verb as-er-beyt; adjective uh-sur-bit]

verb (used with object), ac·er·bat·ed, ac·er·bat·ing.

to make sour or bitter.
to exasperate.


Origin of acerbate

1725–35; < Latin acerbātus, past participle of acerbāre to make bitter. See acerbic, -ate1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for acerbate

annoy, aggravate, disturb, provoke, perturb

Examples from the Web for acerbate

Historical Examples of acerbate

  • Lady Laura had triumphed; but she had no desire to acerbate her husband by any unpalatable allusion to her victory.

    Phineas Finn

    Anthony Trollope

  • The poor girl had not spirit sufficient to upbraid her friend; nor did it suit her now to acerbate an enemy.

    The Way We Live Now

    Anthony Trollope

British Dictionary definitions for acerbate


verb (tr)

to embitter or exasperate
to make sour or bitter

Word Origin for acerbate

C18: from Latin acerbātus, past participle of acerbāre to make sour
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