barb Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “barb” in the English Dictionary

"barb" in British English

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barbnoun [C]

uk   /bɑːb/  us   /bɑːrb/
  • barb noun [C] (POINT)

the ​sharppart that ​pointsbackwards from a ​fish hook (= ​curvedpiece of ​wire) or ​arrow, making it hard to ​remove it from something
  • barb noun [C] (REMARK)

a ​remark that is ​funny but ​unkind: I ​tried to ​ignoretheir barbs about my new ​jacket.
(Definition of barb from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"barb" in American English

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barbnoun [C]

 us   /bɑrb/
  • barb noun [C] (SHARP END)

the ​sharppart of a ​fishhook or ​arrow that makes it ​difficult to ​remove from something ​caught on it
  • barb noun [C] (CRUEL REMARK)

an ​intelligent but ​criticalremark that is ​intended to ​hurt: Some of Weaver’s ​sharpest barbs were ​aimed at his ​boss.
(Definition of barb from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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“barb” in British English

“barb” in American English

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