Examples of pernicious in a Sentence
- The notion that poll data are a legitimate form of news has to be one of the most pernicious tenets of late-twentieth-century American journalism … —Barbara Ehrenreich, Nation, 20 Nov. 1995
- The more it [the Papacy] took part in the temporal conflicts with consistently pernicious result, the more impotent among the monarchs it revealed itself … —Barbara W. Tuchman, The March of Folly, 1984
- At its most pernicious, paper entrepreneurialism involves little more than imposing losses on others for the sake of short-term profits for the firm. —Robert B. Reich, Atlantic, March 1983
More pernicious still has been the acceptance of the author's controversial ideas by the general public.
the pernicious effects of jealousy
She thinks television has a pernicious influence on our children.
Recent Examples of pernicious from the Web
This is all the more pernicious considering the fact that his own campaign is under investigation for possible collusion with the Russians in their interference in the presidential election.
Using violence against black and brown girls as a pretext for harassing and disrupting the lives of immigrant communities is both pernicious and perverse.
These work-family conflicts are crystallized by the intensity of medical training, but gender bias within hospitals — both subtle and overt, from patients and colleagues — may be just as pernicious.
The intelligence reforms of the mid-1970s and beyond eliminated this pernicious practice for four decades and were believed to have created a culture that would prevent its recurrence.
An extended budget freeze is especially pernicious for the Census Bureau, which is ramping up for the 2020 census.
Moreover, the international community’s pernicious adherence to the fiction that Israel’s capital isn’t in Jerusalem helps reinforce deleterious aspects of Palestinian mythology.
In the past few years, evidence supporting iron’s pernicious role in Alzheimer’s disease has mounted.
Yet these words ring empty for someone unwilling to continue to fight Trump's pernicious interview.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pernicious.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
insidious, sinister, or pernicious?
Few would choose to be associated with people or things that are insidious, sinister, or pernicious; all three of these words have decidedly unpleasant meanings, each with its own particular shade of nastiness.
Insidious comes from a Latin word for “ambush” (insidiae), which is fitting, as this word often carries the meanings “deceitful,” “stealthy,” or “harmful in an imperceptible fashion.” The first two meanings may be applied to people or things (“an insidious enemy,” “an insidious plot”), while the last is usually applied to things (“insidious problems,” “insidious sexism”), in particular to the gradual progress of a disease (“an insidious malignancy”).
Sinister comes from a Latin word meaning “on the left side, unlucky, inauspicious.” Although it is commonly used today in the sense “evil” (“a sinister cult leader”; “a sinister plot”), it may also suggest an ominous foreshadowing of some unfavorable turn of events (“a sinister omen”).
Pernicious has largely stayed true to its etymological root, the Latin noun pernicies “ruin, destruction.” Its original meaning in English, “highly injurious or destructive,” usually applies to things (“pernicious apathy,” “pernicious effects”) and medical conditions (“pernicious fever,” pernicious anemia). When applied to people, pernicious means “wicked.”
Synonymsadverse, bad, baleful, baneful, damaging, dangerous, deleterious, detrimental, evil, hurtful, ill, injurious, mischievous, nocuous, noxious, harmful, prejudicial, wicked
Antonymsanodyne, benign, harmless, hurtless, innocent, innocuous, inoffensive, safe
Related Wordshostile, inimical, unfriendly; contagious, deadly, infectious, infective, pestiferous, pestilent, pestilential, poisonous, venomous; insidious, menacing, ominous, sinister, threatening; hazardous, imperiling (or imperilling), jeopardizing, parlous, perilous, risky, unsafe, unsound; nasty, noisome, unhealthful, unhealthy, unwholesome; destructive, fatal, killer, lethal, malignant, ruinous
Near Antonymsadvantageous, beneficial, useful; favorable, good, propitious; curative, healthful, healthy, helpful, palliative, remedial, salubrious, salutary, wholesome; secure, sound; benignant; noncorrosive, nondestructive, nonfatal, noninfectious, nonlethal, nonpoisonous, nonpolluting, nontoxic, nonvenomous
Synonym Discussion of pernicious
- the claim that pornography has a pernicious effect on society
- the baneful notion that discipline destroys creativity
- noxious chemical fumes
- a diet found to have deleterious effects
- the detrimental effects of excessive drinking
PERNICIOUS Defined for English Language Learners
PERNICIOUS Defined for Kids
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up pernicious? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).