from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Roughness or harshness, as of surface, sound, or climate: the asperity of northern winters.
- n. Severity; rigor.
- n. A slight projection from a surface; a point or bump.
- n. Harshness of manner; ill temper or irritability.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Roughness as of stone or weather.
- n. Harshness, as of temper.
- n. Something that is harsh and difficult to endure.
- n. A part of a geological fault line that does not move.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. Roughness of surface; unevenness; -- opposed to
- n. Roughness or harshness of sound; that quality which grates upon the ear; raucity.
- n. Roughness to the taste; sourness; tartness.
- n. Moral roughness; roughness of manner; severity; crabbedness; harshness; -- opposed to
- n. Sharpness; disagreeableness; difficulty.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Roughness of surface; unevenness: opposed to smoothness.
- n. Roughness of sound; harshness of pronunciation.
- n. Harshness of taste; sourness.
- n. Roughness or ruggedness of temper; crabbedness; bitterness; severity: as, to chide one with asperity; “asperity of character,” Landor.
- n. Disagreeableness; unpleasantness; difficulty: as, “the acclivities and asperities of duty,” Barrow, Sermons, III. xlii.
- n. Synonyms Acrimony, Harshness, etc. See acrimony.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. harshness of manner
- n. something hard to endure
I recall the asperity with which this easy out (Kushner's "God is not all-powerful") was dismissed by Yehuda Bauer, the former head of the Yad Vashem Holocaust museum, when I asked him about it in Jerusalem.
With all its merits, there are those who have thought that there was one thing in the declaration to be regretted; and that is, the asperity and anger with which it speaks of the person of the king; the industrious ability with which it accumulates and charges upon him all the injuries which the colonies had suffered from the mother country.
Professor Brack deals with the question of Hawkins's "asperity" toward Johnson in his introduction.
She'd been through the spellin'-book wunst, and had got as fur as 'asperity' on it a second time.
The New York Times noted his asperity when dealing with Apple's competitor, Microsoft, "The only problem with Microsoft is they just have no taste," he said.
I was mulling this when God spoke to me again, this time in a voice every bit as clear but now tinged with a hint of asperity: "Just go do what I'm sending you to do."
That's nice -- as one of my Catholic friends put it with some asperity, she was glad Catholicism "was working out for him."
Its interest, when changes in the world are inevitable and necessary, is to assist so that the changes "if possible, may be accomplished without war; or, if war occurs, that its duration and asperity be lessened."
Bernard Lewis, the renowned scholar of Islam and the Middle East, has noted with asperity that whereas, in a majority-Christian country like the United States, an English-language biographer of Jesus enjoys total latitude to say what he will and as he will, his counterpart working on a biography of Muhammad must look fearfully over his shoulder every step of the way.
"Oh, I know what you're drivin 'at," Bert said with asperity.
Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.