be·​dev·​il bi-ˈde-vəl How to pronounce bedevil (audio)
bedeviled; bedeviling; bedevils

transitive verb

: to possess with or as if with a devil
: to cause distress : trouble
: to change for the worse : spoil
: to confuse utterly
bedevilment noun

Examples of bedevil in a Sentence

The theory bedevils scientists, none of whom have been able to prove it true or false. The project has been bedeviled by problems since its inception.
Recent Examples on the Web The same questions that now hang over the election subversion case in Washington are likely to also bedevil the Georgia case, which was brought by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis. Tribune News Service, The Mercury News, 2 July 2024 According to Wolf, Purple Rain will adhere closely to the framework of the movie in telling the story of the Kid, the Minneapolis musician bedeviled by an abusive father, a suave but cutthroat rival, intra-band friction, and his own emotional development. David Browne, Rolling Stone, 20 June 2024 Tom Vanden Brook: That's what is bedeviling the military and really society at large as well, because suicide has increased throughout society since the year 2000. Taylor Wilson, USA TODAY, 11 June 2024 The Long Shadow of Xinjiang Beijing has acted with a sense of impunity in Xinjiang, but its abuses there could bedevil foreign relations with the Muslim world. Alex Clapp, Foreign Affairs, 10 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for bedevil 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'bedevil.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1574, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of bedevil was in 1574

Dictionary Entries Near bedevil

Cite this Entry

“Bedevil.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


be·​dev·​il bi-ˈdev-əl How to pronounce bedevil (audio)
: to trouble or annoy again and again : pester, harass
bedeviled by problems
bedevilment noun

More from Merriam-Webster on bedevil

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