barbed

Something that's barbed is sharp or spiky. Barbed wire has very sharp points at intervals along its length, to keep animals or people in (or out of) a yard.

Roses are famous for their sweet blossoms and barbed stems. A fish hook is also barbed, with a sharp spike on its end. You can use barbed figuratively, to describe cruel or biting words: "Her barbed comment made it clear how angry she was after the practical joke he'd played on her." The root of barbed is the Old French word for "beard," or "something beardlike," barbe, from the Latin barba, also "beard."

Definitions of barbed
1

adj having or covered with protective barbs or quills or spines or thorns or setae etc.

Synonyms:
barbellate, briary, briery, bristled, bristly, burred, burry, prickly, setaceous, setose, spiny, thorny
armed
(used of plants and animals) furnished with bristles and thorns

adj capable of wounding

“a barbed compliment”
Synonyms:
biting, mordacious, nipping, pungent
sarcastic
expressing or expressive of ridicule that wounds

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.