Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
The Collaborative International Dictionary
Sarcasm \Sar"casm\, n. [F. sarcasme, L. sarcasmus, Gr. sarkasmo`s, from sarka`zein to tear flesh like dogs, to bite the lips in rage, to speak bitterly, to sneer, fr. sa`rx, sa`rkos, flesh.] A keen, reproachful expression; a satirical remark uttered with some degree of scorn or contempt; a taunt; a gibe; a cutting jest.
The sarcasms of those critics who imagine our art to be
a matter of inspiration.
--Sir J. Reynolds.
Syn: Satire; irony; ridicule; taunt; gibe.
Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
1570s, sarcasmus, from Late Latin sarcasmus, from late Greek sarkasmos "a sneer, jest, taunt, mockery," from sarkazein "to speak bitterly, sneer," literally "to strip off the flesh," from sarx (genitive sarkos) "flesh," properly "piece of meat," from PIE root *twerk- "to cut" (cognates: Avestan thwares "to cut"). Current form of the English word is from 1610s. For nuances of usage, see humor.
n. (context uncountable English) A sharp form of humor, intended to hurt, that is marked by mocking with irony, sometimes conveyed in speech with vocal over-emphasis. insincere saying something which is the opposite of one's intended meaning, often to emphasize how unbelievable or unlikely it sounds if taken literally, thereby illustrating the obvious nature of one's intended meaning.
Sarcasm is "a sharp, bitter, or cutting expression or remark; a bitter gibe or taunt." Sarcasm may employ ambivalence, although sarcasm is not necessarily ironic. "The distinctive quality of sarcasm is present in the spoken word and manifested chiefly by vocal inflections". The sarcastic content of a statement will be dependent upon the context in which it appears.
Usage examples of "sarcasm".
With their droll sarcasm, high spirits, and practical jokes, Acer and his set took it upon themselves to flatter and tease Jacinda back into her usual good humor.
Peace with Auricular Confession is surely the most cruel sarcasm ever uttered in human language.
He gave no grip to Colney, who groaned at cheap Donnish sarcasm, and let him go, after dealing him a hard pellet or two in a cracker-covering.
Rita Clay Estrada He looked slightly sheepish, but not bowed by her sarcasm.
The disingenuousness and factiousness of Disraeli roused the spirit of Sir Charles, and inspired him with a sarcasm unlike his own serious and even dull tone of address.
If I had let my passion be suspected I should have been laughed at, and should have made myself a mark for the pitiless sarcasms of Camille.
It seemed to sense it had lost its hold on him, for when it filled the air pouches behind its jaws and belched its words at him, Kennit sensed a trace of sarcasm.
This functionary, however well disposed to my friend, could not altogether conceal his chagrin at the turn which affairs had taken, and was fain to indulge in a sarcasm or two, about the propriety of every person minding his own business.
Prone to indulge a strong natural tendency for sarcasm, especially against his political opponents, he published, in a Glasgow newspaper, a severe poetical pasquinade against Mr James Stuart, younger of Dunearn, a leading member of the Liberal party in Edinburgh.
Margland, extremely piqued, vented her spleen in oblique sarcasms, and sought to heal her offended pride by appeals for justice to her sagacity and foresight in the whole business.
He could see Rosario flushing under the sarcasm and cut to the main point.
Filled with titillation, sarcasm, innuendos, and suggestions of radical activities of a violent nature.
They sauntered down the hillside, Titek chattering happily and Aisha indulging him with polite and informative answers, pitted by only the occasional barbless bolt of sarcasm.
Foma felt their daring audacity, their biting sarcasm, their passionate malice, and he was as well pleased with them as though he had been scourged with besoms in a hot bath.
Divest this passage of the latent sarcasm betrayed by the subsequent tone of the whole disquisition, and it might commence a Christian history written in the most Christian spirit of candor.