ma·​lig·​ni·​ty | \ mə-ˈlig-nə-tē How to pronounce malignity (audio) \

Definition of malignity

2 : an instance of malignant or malicious behavior or nature

Choose the Right Synonym for malignity

malice, malevolence, ill will, spite, malignity, spleen, grudge mean the desire to see another experience pain, injury, or distress. malice implies a deep-seated often unexplainable desire to see another suffer. felt no malice toward their former enemies malevolence suggests a bitter persistent hatred that is likely to be expressed in malicious conduct. a look of dark malevolence ill will implies a feeling of antipathy of limited duration. ill will provoked by a careless remark spite implies petty feelings of envy and resentment that are often expressed in small harassments. petty insults inspired by spite malignity implies deep passion and relentlessness. a life consumed by motiveless malignity spleen suggests the wrathful release of latent spite or persistent malice. venting his spleen against politicians grudge implies a harbored feeling of resentment or ill will that seeks satisfaction. never one to harbor a grudge

Examples of malignity in a Sentence

one of the characters in the novel is a dictator of such malignity that he came to be one of the most famous villains in all of literature
Recent Examples on the Web Where Moyn is driven by a photonegative of American exceptionalism—a sense that American power is a singular force of malignity in the world—Arkin is concerned that this perpetual-war machine is at odds with America’s strategic interests. Dexter Filkins, The New Yorker, 6 Sep. 2021 Decades of miserable history had to pass before the comedy buried within their malignity was revealed, like a vein of ore uncovered by a natural catastrophe. Ian Frazier, The New Yorker, 19 Aug. 2019 Sections on stock characters of anti-Jewish propaganda and political satire from across the centuries, such as Judas and the figure of the Jewish moneylender, expose the malignity and menace of the myth. Sara Lipton, The New York Review of Books, 17 June 2019

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

First Known Use of malignity

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of malignity was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Malignity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Aug. 2022.

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