Dictionary > Retort

Retort

retort
1. The return of, or reply to, an argument, charge, censure, incivility, taunt, or witticism; a quick and witty or severe response. This is called the retort courteous. (Shak)
2. F. Retorte (cf. Sp. Retorta), fr. L. Retortus, p. P. Of retorquere. So named from its bent shape. See Retort.
(Science: chemistry) A vessel in which substances are subjected to distillation or decomposition by heat. It is made of different forms and materials for different uses, as a bulb of glass with a curved beak to enter a receiver for general chemical operations, or a cylinder or semicylinder of cast iron for the manufacture of gas in gas works.
(Science: chemistry) tubulated retort, a retort having a tubulure for the introduction or removal of the substances which are to be acted upon.
Synonym: Repartee, answer.
Retort, Repartee. A retort is a short and pointed reply, turning back on an assailant the arguments, censure, or derision he had thrown out. A repartee is usually a good-natured return to some witty or sportive remark.
See: Retort.


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