mischievous

adjective
mis·​chie·​vous | \ ˈmis-chə-vəs How to pronounce mischievous (audio) , ˈmish-; nonstandard mis-ˈchē-vē-əs How to pronounce mischievous (audio) , mish-\

Definition of mischievous

1 : harmful, injurious mischievous gossip
2a : able or tending to cause annoyance, trouble, or minor injury
b : irresponsibly playful mischievous behavior

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Other Words from mischievous

mischievously adverb
mischievousness noun

Mischievous vs. Mischievious: Usage Guide

A pronunciation \mis-ˈchē-vē-əs\ and a consequent spelling mischievious are of long standing: evidence for the spelling goes back to the 16th century. Our pronunciation files contain modern attestations ranging from dialect speakers to Herbert Hoover. But both the pronunciation and the spelling are still considered nonstandard.

Examples of mischievous in a Sentence

In passing the test of killing itself if infected, cancerous or genetically mischievous, a cell by definition dies. — Matt Ridley, Genome, 1999 … Pedro Martinez, could be found in the dugout, usually wearing sneakers instead of spikes, his tongue flying about as fiercely as one of his mischievous fastballs. — Tom Verducci, Sports Illustrated, 11 Oct. 1999 Setsu grew, too, from a mischievous, laughing little girl into a gay, willful, pretty girl. — Pearl S. Buck, The Big Wave, 1947 the children had been so mischievous that we had to pay the babysitter extra and then clean up the mess punished for their mischievous tricks on the neighbors
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Recent Examples on the Web

Written by the Crossover staff Nearly a quarter century ago, the mischievous developers at Midway created NBA Jam, marrying video games and sports in a way never seen before. SI.com, "Sports Illustrated's Where Are They Now? Stories," 23 June 2019 Her on-screen charisma is tempered by a mischievous sense of humour. Anne Cohen, refinery29.com, "Midsommar Star Florence Pugh Swears Her Cult-y Horror Breakup Movie Isn't That Scary," 20 June 2019 For centuries, authors have described this sound as deceitful or mischievous. Christine Dell'amore, National Geographic, "Hyenas have a bad rap—but they’re Africa’s most successful predator," 14 June 2019 My younger brother and I were equally obsessed with Andy Davis' loveable yet sometimes mischievous toys in the Pixar films. Chloe Melas, CNN, "'Toy Story 4' cast shares their own childhood toy stories," 18 June 2019 Erskine and Quaid share crackling, mischievous chemistry. Anne Cohen, refinery29.com, "Plus One Is The Perfect Movie For The Person Who Has 16 Weddings To Go To This Summer," 13 June 2019 That’s barely the beginning of Scorsese and Dylan’s hoodwinkery: The two are like mischievous twins, playing jokes on mom. Stephanie Zacharek, Time, "Martin Scorsese’s Bob Dylan Film Rolling Thunder Revue Is One of the Most Truthful Movies You’ll See in 2019," 12 June 2019 Take some quarrelling lovers; add a troupe of actors presenting a play within the play and toss in mischievous fairies for good measure. Kathy Cichon, Elgin Courier-News, "Janus' Unrehearsed Shakespeare returns to Elgin," 12 June 2019 Screenwriter Scotty Landes captures a mischievous animus that may be the illiberal spirit of the age. Armond White, National Review, "Ma’s Black-Mammy Stereotypes Capture the Illiberal Spirit," 7 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mischievous.' 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 mischievous

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for mischievous

see mischief

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Statistics for mischievous

Last Updated

6 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for mischievous

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

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More Definitions for mischievous

mischievous

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of mischievous

: causing or tending to cause annoyance or minor harm or damage
: showing a playful desire to cause trouble
: intended to harm someone or someone's reputation

mischievous

adjective
mis·​chie·​vous | \ ˈmis-chə-vəs How to pronounce mischievous (audio) \

Kids Definition of mischievous

1 : causing or likely to cause minor injury or harm a mischievous puppy
2 : showing a spirit of irresponsible fun or playfulness The boy had a mischievous look on his face.
3 : harming or intended to do harm mischievous gossip

Other Words from mischievous

mischievously adverb

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Comments on mischievous

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