C14: from Medieval Latin vitriolum, from Late Latin vitriolus glassy, from Latin vitrum glass, referring to the glossy appearance of the sulphates
vitriol for learners of EnglishPowered by COBUILD (vɪtrioʊl)
If you refer to what someone says or writes as vitriol, you disapprove of it because it is full of bitterness and hate, and so causes a lot of distress and pain. [disapproval] ⇒ The vitriol he hurled at members of the press knew no bounds. ⇒ He has been no stranger to controversy and vitriol during a tumultuous political career.