mur·der·ous | \ˈmər-d(ə-)rəs \

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

China has signed up to unprecedented sanctions on North Korea, curbing its coal trade with that murderous regime. The Economist, "Decades of optimism about China’s rise have been discarded," 1 Mar. 2018 Elsewhere, Emily is also rebelling against the confines of Gilead – only her intentions are more murderous., "The Handmaid's Tale Recap Season 2, Episode 13: The Martha Express," 11 July 2018 The next most murderous are monkey and lemur species, followed by sea lions. Ben Guarino, Anchorage Daily News, "The world’s most murderous mammal is probably not what you think it is," 30 Sep. 2016 Most recently in the Valley, it's been on the minds of legal and mental-health professionals following a murderous rampage in the Phoenix area that left sevendead, including spree shooter Dwight Jones. Perry Vandell, azcentral, "Messy Family Court battles can crush souls, stir rage, sometimes ignite violence," 17 June 2018 Herzfeld saved dozens of young lives by hiding students in a classroom closet as former student Nikolas Cruz went on a murderous rampage, killing 17 people. Madeleine Marr, miamiherald, "This Parkland singer hit the high note in an emotional performance at the Tonys," 11 June 2018 Norman Osborn eventually gave Thompson a job, earned his trust, and ultimately force-fed him whisky and put him behind the wheel of a truck, all in an effort to drive Parker into a murderous rage. Richard Newby, The Hollywood Reporter, "A Eulogy for a Fallen Spider-Man Character," 31 May 2018 The push to draft policies to address school safety follows a rash of shootings, including a murderous rampage in Santa Fe, 35 miles southeast of Houston, on May 18. Andrea Zelinski, Houston Chronicle, "Abbott to unveil plan to avoid future school shootings," 29 May 2018 Precious little, though, points to any plan to carry out his murderous rampage in the peaceful streets of Münster's old town. Charlotte Chelsom-pill, USA TODAY, "German city of Münster searches for answers, days after deadly van attack," 10 Apr. 2018

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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Statistics for murderous

Last Updated

28 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for murderous

The first known use of murderous was in 1535

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More Definitions for murderous



English Language Learners Definition of murderous

: very violent or deadly

: very angry

: very harsh or severe


mur·der·ous | \ˈmər-də-rəs \

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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Comments on murderous

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