in·fa·my | \ ˈin-fə-mē \
plural infamies

Definition of infamy 

1 : evil reputation brought about by something grossly criminal, shocking, or brutal

2a : an extreme and publicly known criminal or evil act

b : the state of being infamous

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Choose the Right Synonym for infamy

disgrace, dishonor, disrepute, infamy, ignominy mean the state or condition of suffering loss of esteem and of enduring reproach. disgrace often implies humiliation and sometimes ostracism. sent home in disgrace dishonor emphasizes the loss of honor that one has enjoyed or the loss of self-esteem. preferred death to life with dishonor disrepute stresses loss of one's good name or the acquiring of a bad reputation. a once proud name fallen into disrepute infamy usually implies notoriety as well as exceeding shame. a day that lives in infamy ignominy stresses humiliation. the ignominy of being arrested

Examples of infamy in a Sentence

He never escaped the infamy his crimes had earned him. despite her eventual pardons, she could never completely free herself of the infamy of being named a war criminal

Recent Examples on the Web

But one derby project lives in infamy: an S. Pellegrino bottle on wheels. Stephanie O'neill, Washington Post, "Father’s And Son’s Injuries Lead To The Mother Of All Therapy Bills," 29 June 2018 His actions ensured the weekend of June 10 would be remembered in Orlando as one of infamy and heartbreak. Jeff Weiner,, "CHRISTINA GRIMMIE: THE MURDER OF A RISING STAR," 2 July 2018 Harvey also brought infamy to little Nederland, Texas, near the Louisiana border when one location near the town of about 20,000 was walloped with 60.58 inches of rain. John Bacon, USA TODAY, "Houston streets flood again, dampening July 4th celebrations," 4 July 2018 Often felons like Thibodeaux, these mentors have criminal infamy that still carries enough weight on the street to give them credibility with kids caught up in this generation of violence. Anita Chabria, sacbee, "The man in charge of Sacramento's new anti-gun violence program was once a shooter himself," 29 May 2018 Rice earned infamy for making up dozens of fake names and addresses on 22 grand larceny and auto theft cases in Ozone Park between 2011 and 2012., "NYPD detective stripped of shield for allegedly making up bogus witnesses," 5 May 2018 But his fame — or, in many a craw, infamy — eventually faded. Kristin E. Holmes,, "Cast out by the Quakers, Abington's abolitionist dwarf finally has his day," 18 Apr. 2018 SUBSCRIBE TODAY Former Olympic skater Tonya Harding brings infamy to the ballroom. Pete Grathoff And Lisa Gutierrez, kansascity, "Former Royals star Johnny Damon will be on 'Dancing With The Stars' | The Kansas City Star," 13 Apr. 2018 For decades, police in Los Angeles have considered gang injunctions an invaluable tool that helped reduce violent crime in a region that once gained infamy as the birthing ground of some of the country's most notorious gangs. James Queally,, "Does the LAPD still need gang injunctions to fight crime? The city is about to find out," 17 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'infamy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of infamy

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for infamy

Last Updated

7 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for infamy

The first known use of infamy was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for infamy



English Language Learners Definition of infamy

: the condition of being known for having done bad things or for being evil

: an evil or terrible act


in·fa·my | \ ˈin-fə-mē \
plural infamies

Kids Definition of infamy

1 : an evil reputation He earned infamy for his crimes.

2 : an evil or terrible act The people suffered the infamies of their ruler.

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More from Merriam-Webster on infamy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for infamy

Spanish Central: Translation of infamy

Nglish: Translation of infamy for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about infamy

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the setting in which something occurs

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