Meaning of BITTER in English


transcription, транскрипция: [ bɪtə(r) ]

( bitterest, bitters)

Frequency: The word is one of the 3000 most common words in English.


In a bitter argument or conflict, people argue very angrily or fight very fiercely.

...the scene of bitter fighting during the Second World War.

...a bitter attack on the Government’s failure to support manufacturing...


• bit‧ter‧ly

Any such thing would be bitterly opposed by most of the world’s democracies.

...a bitterly fought football match.

ADV : usu ADV with v , also ADV adj

• bit‧ter‧ness

The rift within the organization reflects the growing bitterness of the dispute.



If someone is bitter after a disappointing experience or after being treated unfairly, they continue to feel angry about it.

She is said to be very bitter about the way she was sacked...

His long life was marked by bitter personal and political memories.


• bit‧ter‧ly

‘And he sure didn’t help us,’ Grant said bitterly.

...the party bureaucrats who bitterly resented their loss of power.

ADV : usu ADV with v , also ADV adj

• bit‧ter‧ness

I still feel bitterness and anger towards the person who knocked me down.



A bitter experience makes you feel very disappointed. You can also use bitter to emphasize feelings of disappointment.

I think the decision was a bitter blow from which he never quite recovered...

The statement was greeted with bitter disappointment by many of the other delegates.

ADJ : usu ADJ n

• bit‧ter‧ly

I was bitterly disappointed to have lost yet another race so near the finish.

ADV : ADV adj , ADV with v


Bitter weather, or a bitter wind, is extremely cold.

Outside, a bitter east wind was accompanied by flurries of snow.


• bit‧ter‧ly

It’s been bitterly cold here in Moscow.

ADV : ADV adj


A bitter taste is sharp, not sweet, and often slightly unpleasant.

The leaves taste rather bitter.

≠ sweet



Bitter is a kind of beer that is light brown in colour. ( BRIT )

...a pint of bitter.



If you say that you will continue doing something to the bitter end , especially something difficult or unpleasant, you are emphasizing that you will continue doing it until it is completely finished.

The guerrillas would fight to the bitter end, he said, in order to achieve their main goal.

PHRASE : PHR after v [ emphasis ]


a bitter pill: see pill

Collins COBUILD Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Английский словарь Коллинз COBUILD для изучающих язык на продвинутом уровне.