Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

virulent

play
adjective vir·u·lent \ˈvir-ə-lənt, ˈvir-yə-\

Simple Definition of virulent

  • : full of hate or anger

  • : extremely or excessively harsh or strong

  • : extremely dangerous and deadly and usually spreading very quickly

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of virulent

  1. 1 a :  marked by a rapid, severe, and destructive course <a virulent infection> b :  able to overcome bodily defensive mechanisms :  markedly pathogenic <virulent bacteria>

  2. 2 :  extremely poisonous or venomous

  3. 3 :  full of malice :  malignant <virulent racists>

  4. 4 :  objectionably harsh or strong <virulent criticism>

virulently

adverb

Examples of virulent in a sentence

  1. The country seemed to be returning to the virulent nationalism of its past.

  2. <the virulent look on her face warned me that she was about to say something unkind>



Origin and Etymology of virulent

Middle English, from Latin virulentus, from virus poison


First Known Use: 14th century

Other Microbiology Terms


VIRULENT Defined for Kids

virulent

play
adjective vir·u·lent \ˈvir-ə-lənt\

Definition of virulent for Students

  1. :  spreading quickly and causing serious harm <a virulent disease>




Medical Dictionary

virulent

play
adjective vir·u·lent \-lənt\

Medical Definition of virulent

  1. 1a:  marked by a rapid, severe, and malignant course <a virulent infection>b:  able to overcome bodily defense mechanisms <a virulent pathogen>

  2. 2:  extremely poisonous or venomous :  noxious





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up virulent? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a secret group of plotters

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

dog-eating-apple

Which is a synonym of asperse?

placate divulge defame beat
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ