C'mon; let's have a more up-to-date definition, suitable for softlinking to.

My Webster 1979 defines "vitriol" as

sharpness or bitterness of feeling, as in speech or writing; venom

Let's see. Use "vitriol" in a sentence. How about:

I can't believe the number of writeups I've seen here on E2, composed of nothing but vitriol.
V.I.T.R.I.O.L.

A famous alchemical acrostic of seven words forming the Latin sentence:

"Visita Interiora Terra Rectificando Invenies Occultum Lapidem"

Which (Adam McLean)translates into English as:

"Visit the interior of the earth, in purifying you discover the hidden stone".

The word vitriol was chosen for this 'task' because of its caustic nature, for how else can one penetrate the hardness of stone?

For details on this process see tabula smaragdina hermetis.

Vit"ri*ol (?), n. [F. vitriol; cf. Pr. vitriol, vetriol, Sp. & Pg. vitriolo, It. vitriuolo; fr. L. vitreolus of glass, vitreus vitreous. See Vitreous.] (Chem.)

(a)

A sulphate of any one of certain metals, as copper, iron, zinc, cobalt. So called on account of the glassy appearance or luster.

(b)

Sulphuric acid; -- called also oil of vitriol. So called because first made by the distillation of green vitriol. See Sulphuric acid, under Sulphuric. [Colloq.]

Blue vitriol. See under Blue. --
Green vitriol, ferrous sulphate; copperas. See under Green. --
Oil of vitriol, sulphuric or vitriolic acid; -- popularly so called because it has the consistency of oil. --
Red vitriol, a native sulphate of cobalt. --
Vitriol of Mars, ferric sulphate, a white crystalline substance which dissolves in water, forming a red solution. --
White vitriol, zinc sulphate, a white crystalline substance used in medicine and in dyeing. It is usually obtained by dissolving zinc in sulphuric acid, or by roasting and oxidizing certain zinc ores. Formerly called also vitriol of zinc.

 

© Webster 1913


Vit"ri*ol (?), v. t. [imp. & p. p. -oled (?) or -olled; p. pr. & vb. n. -oling or -olling.] [From Vitriol, n.]

1. (Metal.)

To dip in dilute sulphuric acid; to pickle.

2.

To vitriolize. [Colloq.]

 

© Webster 1913

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