Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Having a taste characteristic of that produced by acids; sharp, tart, or tangy.
  • adj. Made acid or rancid by fermentation.
  • adj. Having the characteristics of fermentation or rancidity; tasting or smelling of decay.
  • adj. Bad-tempered and morose; peevish: a sour temper.
  • adj. Displeased with something one formerly admired or liked; disenchanted: sour on ballet.
  • adj. Not measuring up to the expected or usual ability or quality; bad.
  • adj. Not having the correct or properly produced pitch: a sour note.
  • adj. Of or relating to excessively acid soil that is damaging to crops.
  • adj. Containing excessive sulfur compounds. Used of gasoline.
  • n. The sensation of sour taste, one of the four primary tastes.
  • n. Something sour.
  • n. A mixed drink made especially with whiskey, lemon or lime juice, sugar, and sometimes soda water.
  • transitive v. To make or become sour.
  • transitive v. To make or become disagreeable, disillusioned, or disenchanted.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Having an acidic, sharp or tangy taste.
  • adj. Made rancid by fermentation, etc.
  • adj. Tasting or smelling rancid.
  • adj. Peevish or bad-tempered.
  • adj. Excessively acidic and thus infertile.
  • adj. Containing excess sulfur.
  • adj. Unfortunate or unfavorable.
  • n. The sensation of a sour taste.
  • n. A drink made with whiskey, lemon or lime juice and sugar.
  • n. Any cocktail containing lemon or lime juice.
  • v. To make or become sour.
  • v. To become disenchanted.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Having an acid or sharp, biting taste, like vinegar, and the juices of most unripe fruits; acid; tart.
  • adj. Changed, as by keeping, so as to be acid, rancid, or musty, turned.
  • adj. Disagreeable; unpleasant; hence; cross; crabbed; peevish; morose
  • adj. Afflictive; painful.
  • adj. Cold and unproductive
  • n. A sour or acid substance; whatever produces a painful effect.
  • transitive v. To cause to become sour; to cause to turn from sweet to sour.
  • transitive v. To make cold and unproductive, as soil.
  • transitive v. To make unhappy, uneasy, or less agreeable.
  • transitive v. To cause or permit to become harsh or unkindly.
  • transitive v. To macerate, and render fit for plaster or mortar.
  • intransitive v. To become sour; to turn from sweet to sour

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Having an acid taste; sharp to the taste; tart; acid; specifically, acid in consequence of fermentation; fermented, and thus spoiled: as, sour bread; sour milk.
  • Harsh of temper; crabbed; peevish; austere; morose: as, a man of a sour temper.
  • Afflictive; hard to bear; bitter; disagreeable to the feelings; distasteful in any manner.
  • Expressing discontent, displeasure, or peevishness: as, a sour word.
  • Cold; wet; harsh; unkindly to crops: said of soil.
  • Coarse: said of grass.
  • Synonyms Acetous, acetose.
  • 2 and
  • Cross, testy, waspish, snarling, cynical.
  • n. Something sour or acid; something bitter or disagreeable.
  • n. Dirt; filth.
  • n. An acid punch.
  • n. In bleaching and dyeing:
  • n. A bath of buttermilk or sour milk, or of soured bran or rye-flour, used by primitive bleachers.
  • n. A weak solution of sulphuric or hydrochloric acid, used for various purposes. Compare souring, 5.
  • To become sour; become acid; acquire the quality of tartness or pungency to the taste, as by fermentation: as, cider sours rapidly in the rays of the sun.
  • To become peevish, crabbed, or harsh in temper.
  • To become harsh, wet, cold, or unkindly to crops: said of soil.
  • To make sour; make acid; cause to have a sharp taste, especially by fermentation.
  • To make harsh, crabbed, morose, or bitter in temper; make cross or discontented; embitter; prejudice.
  • To make harsh, wet, cold, or unkindly to crops: said of soil.
  • In bleaching, etc., to treat with a dilute acid.
  • To macerate and render fit for plaster or mortar, as lime.
  • Sourly; bitterly.
  • n. In drenching or puering skins, the old liquor which has become sour or turned.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a cocktail made of a liquor (especially whiskey or gin) mixed with lemon or lime juice and sugar
  • adj. having a sharp biting taste
  • v. go sour or spoil
  • adj. smelling of fermentation or staleness
  • adj. inaccurate in pitch
  • adj. in an unpalatable state
  • adj. showing a brooding ill humor
  • n. the taste experience when vinegar or lemon juice is taken into the mouth
  • n. the property of being acidic
  • adj. one of the four basic taste sensations; like the taste of vinegar or lemons
  • v. make sour or more sour

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old English sūr.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English sour, from Old English sūr ("sour"), from Proto-Germanic *sūraz (“sour”), from Proto-Indo-European *sūr- (“sour (milk)”). Cognate with West Frisian soer, Dutch zuur ("sour"), Low German suur, German sauer ("sour"), Danish and Swedish sur ("sour"), Icelandic súr ("sour, bitter"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • She tried to shake him off, but his fingers tightened and she sat still, her expression sour as he began to pour healing energy into her.

    Crimson Wind

  • “Uh-huh,” Kaitlynn replied, her expression sour as she looked Ariana up and down.

    Sweet Deceit

  • Ex surveyed the circle of dirt, his expression sour.

    Vicious Grace

  • Amanda went to stand opposite Berry on the other side of the bed, her expression sour.

    Tough Customer

  • Anonymous -- sorry if I struck a nerve, but in my experience Chinese American restaurant (I emphasize restaurant) sweet and sour is pretty heavy.

    So You Think You've Had Sweet And Sour?: Thai Sweet And Sour With Pork

  • Sift about one-third of flour mixture over chocolate mixture and whisk until combined; whisk in sour cream until combined, then sift remaining flour mixture over and whisk until batter is homogenous and thick.

    Archive 2009-02-01

  • I am afraid they are not like that Taco Bell stuff you Americans like so much, sir, but if you want I can smother them in sour cream and you will hardly be able to tell the difference.

    Superhero Nation: how to write superhero novels and comic books » 2009 » May » 25

  • Remove from heat and stir in sour cream until well combined.

    humba! « Love | Peace | Ohana

  • Because, spelled out on the customer side of the cash register screen, scrolling horizontally in sour green lights, was the following playfully animated message: “WELCOME TO G. HEAVEN — Have a good day!!!”

    Good Friday

  • Rising commodity prices, combined with increasingly competitive pricing and rising advertising and promotion budgets, are contributing to what Nomura analysts have dubbed a "margin sour spot."

    Food Awakening to Margin Squeeze

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