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
While the gender wage gap is well known, the racial wage gap is just as pernicious a problem—especially for women of color.
China is much further back, but administration officials say the country has a pernicious effect on the global steel market because of its excess capacity.
While doctors can no longer legally turn patients away because of race, pernicious gaps in treatment continue to undermine the health of black populations.
To survive and prosper, the South, and the nation, must renounce this pernicious creed and disarm its symbols.
Getty Student A (as she is identified in court documents) has been painted in the trope of the pernicious bathroom predator.
A citywide effort to review how rapid gentrification is changing Denver’s public schools — and come up with ideas to combat the most pernicious effects — kicked off Monday.
FNC might as well stand for Fake News Channel, and its myths have had a pernicious, indeed debilitating, effect on U.S. politics.
But that very fact is one of the reasons why conflicts of interest are so pernicious.
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.”
Synonym Discussion of pernicious
PERNICIOUS Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of pernicious for English Language Learners
: causing great harm or damage often in a way that is not easily seen or noticed
PERNICIOUS Defined for Kids
Definition of pernicious for Students
: causing great damage or harm a pernicious disease a pernicious habit
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