per·​ver·​sion | \ pər-ˈvər-zhən How to pronounce perversion (audio) , -shən\

Definition of perversion

1 : the action of perverting : the condition of being perverted
2 : a perverted form especially : an aberrant sexual practice or interest especially when habitual

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Examples of perversion in a Sentence

They fought against perversion of the health-care system. claimed that rap and rock music were responsible for the perversion of the nation's young people

Recent Examples on the Web

They are supposed to be a purveyor of justice and this has become a perversion of justice. Christine Pelisek,, "Girl, 16, Raped and Killed While Leaving Library in 1980 — Now Her Killers Are Set to Be Released," 17 June 2019 Offences relating to the perversion or obstruction of the course of justice. Mary Hui, Quartz, "These are all the crimes Hong Kong is considering extraditing people for under a new law," 7 June 2019 The practice is known as rule by law, a perversion of what its practitioners like to claim is the rule of law. Fox News, "Hun Sen plays hardball to keep his grip on Cambodia," 31 July 2018 While that may provide a path to business success for a struggling media industry, some see it as a corporate perversion of a public good – the airwaves. Christa Case Bryant, The Christian Science Monitor, "As news ownership consolidates, will local TV become more partisan?," 13 July 2018 Factory farming is a perversion of those values, and a movement away from factory farming is a return to those values. Amy Kaufman, Detroit Free Press, "‘Eating Animals’ documentary bites into meat industry," 24 June 2018 Everyone is friendly enough, and there's the right amount of perversion. Dan Savage, Chicago Reader, "What to do when someone horns in on all the action at the orgy," 23 May 2018 And that's a real perversion of what ought to happen. Ryan D'agostino, Esquire, "The Drugging of the American Boy," 27 Mar. 2014 Drag, to Charles, is about the perversion of our understanding of gender, and by extension, ourselves. Jenna Wortham, New York Times, "Is ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ the Most Radical Show on TV?," 24 Jan. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for perversion

Last Updated

28 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for perversion

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

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More Definitions for perversion



English Language Learners Definition of perversion

: sexual behavior that people think is not normal or natural
: something that improperly changes something good
: the process of improperly changing something that is good


per·​ver·​sion | \ pər-ˈvər-zhən, -shən How to pronounce perversion (audio) \

Medical Definition of perversion

1 : the action of perverting or the condition of being perverted
2 : an aberrant sexual practice or interest especially when habitual

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Comments on perversion

What made you want to look up perversion? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


an act or instance of editing or removing

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