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An Acrid substance is one that has an unpleasantly sharp, hot, biting, bitter or burning taste. May also have an irritating or corrosive effect on the eyes, skin or mucous membrane.
The word acrid has been in use since at least the 17th century - for example Thomas Johnson's 1649 translation of "The Workes Of That Famous Chirurgion Ambrose Parey" uses the word in numerous instances, mentioning acrid medicines, acrid ointments and so on. 
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