A Word A Day : Trenchant

Wednesday, 13th February 2008 : Today's Word is ...


( Adjective )

Pronunciation : trén-chant


1. clearly or sharply defined

2. vigorous, effective, energetic

3. possessing or displaying perceptions of great accuracy and sensitivity

4. so sharp as to cause mental pain

5. having keenness and forcefulness and penetration in thought, expression or intellect


Middle English, from Old French, cutting, from present participle of trenchier, to cut


incisive, cutting, sharp, biting, acerbic, severe, scathing, forceful, direct, forthright, caustic, penetrating

• Having a sharp taste is pungent.

• Having a pleasingly sharp taste is piquant.


mild, kind, nice, frivolous, gentle, impotent, weak

Contextual Examples:

• Determine what specific goal you want to achieve. Then dedicate yourself to its attainment with unswerving singleness of purpose, the trenchant zeal of a crusader.

• He heard these words in his father's trenchant voice, and trembled, and then dodged the thought.

• The very air seemed as hard and trenchant as steel. But it would have taken much more than this to extinguish my sacred fire for the exercise of my craft.

• With trenchant swords upraised and poised on high, it seemed as though the two valiant and wrathful combatants stood threatening heaven and hell.

Related Words:

trenchantly : Adverb

trenchancy : Noun

Common Misspellings of Trenchant:



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