mur·​der·​ous | \ ˈmər-d(ə-)rəs How to pronounce murderous (audio) \

Definition of murderous

1a : having the purpose or capability of murder
b : characterized by or causing murder or bloodshed
2 : having the ability or power to overwhelm : devastating murderous heat

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Other Words from murderous

murderously adverb
murderousness noun

Examples of murderous in a Sentence

I can't stand this murderous heat. The lead runner set a murderous pace.
Recent Examples on the Web The group voluntarily changed its name to Lady A, dropping the reference to the murderous Southern plantation days of white landowners whipping Black slaves for profit. Brent Schrotenboer, USA TODAY, "Does it really matter if Aunt Jemima and Uncle Ben get retired?," 23 June 2020 In addition to including Candyman, who in the movie franchise is murdered for being part of a multiracial relationship and returns as a murderous supernatural entity, the short features depictions of other victims of racial killings. Clark Collis,, "Candyman sequel director releases animated short featuring iconic horror character," 18 June 2020 Anti-communism, in other words, has its own murderous history. Andre Pagliarini, The New Republic, "Where America Developed a Taste for State Violence," 5 June 2020 The teens of Liberty High could have fretted about college applications, and then went off into the world, desperate to hide their murderous secrets forever. Ariana Romero,, "This Is Exactly What’s Happening With Clay On 13 Reasons Why," 5 June 2020 His death sparked violence on a much larger scale as the group morphed into a murderous sect after Abubakar Shekau, a far more radical leader (and now Nigeria’s most wanted man), emerged in Yusuf’s stead. Yomi Kazeem, Quartz Africa, "George Floyd’s killing touches a nerve with Africans who know police brutality at home and abroad," 1 June 2020 These include a group of warrior women made up of cheerleaders and a murderous gang of jocks. Tyler Aquilina,, "Daybreak star Matthew Broderick thinks Ferris Bueller would do 'pretty well' in the apocalypse," 4 Oct. 2019 Since the late nineteen-seventies, Danzig has often sung beautifully about murderous rage. Amanda Petrusich, The New Yorker, "Glenn Danzig Sings Elvis," 12 May 2020 Not to mention, these bugs aren’t inherently more murderous or terrifying than ones already common on our soil. Sara Kiley Watson, Outdoor Life, "Murder Hornets are Coming (But Probably Not for You)," 6 May 2020

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

1535, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for murderous

Time Traveler

The first known use of murderous was in 1535

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Statistics for murderous

Last Updated

7 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Murderous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for murderous


How to pronounce murderous (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of murderous

: very violent or deadly
: very angry
: very harsh or severe


mur·​der·​ous | \ ˈmər-də-rəs How to pronounce murderous (audio) \

Kids Definition of murderous

1 : intending or capable of causing murder : deadly a murderous attack
2 : very hard to bear or withstand murderous heat

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