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Word of the Day
Monday, June 07, 1999

Definitions for mordant

  1. Biting; caustic; sarcastic.

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Citations for mordant
Mr. Justice Moorcroft's forte, a part which he had played for so many years that it had become instinctive, was a courteous reasonableness occasionally enlivened with shafts of mordant wit. P. D. James, A Certain Justice
I moved from one knot of people to another, surrounded by a kind of envious respect because of Sophie's interest in me, although subjected to a certain mordant raillery from some of this witty company. Peter Brooks, World Elsewhere
Origin of mordant
late Middle English
Mordant comes from the present participle of Old French mordre, "to bite," from Latin mordere. It is related to morsel, "a little bite"; and remorse, from Latin remordere, "to bite back or again; to torment."
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