ran·​cor·​ous | \ ˈraŋ-k(ə-)rəs How to pronounce rancorous (audio) \

Definition of rancorous

: marked by rancor : deeply malevolent rancorous envy

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from rancorous

rancorously adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for rancorous



Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of rancorous in a Sentence

a rancorous autobiography in which the author heaps blame on just about everyone who had the misfortune of knowing him
Recent Examples on the Web Despite a rancorous political climate, the girls were largely off-limits for political adversaries of the Obamas. Kim Kozlowski, chicagotribune.com, "Sasha Obama will begin college classes at the University of Michigan next week," 29 Aug. 2019 Charles and David split their shares of Koch Industries equally after buying out two other brothers in a rancorous and hugely litigious breakup. Suzanne Goldenberg, Washington Post, "How the Kochs built their business — and their power," 16 Aug. 2019 The first is a split over Donald Trump far more rancorous and damaging than most non-evangelicals appreciate. The Economist, "The Southern Baptists are beset by two related fiascos," 15 June 2019 The golden girl The EU selected Kristalina Georgieva as its candidate to head the IMF, but only after the rancorous exercise concluded with some telephone diplomacy. The Economist, "Business this week," 10 Aug. 2019 That was surpassed only by the month of November 2016 surrounding the rancorous presidential race won by Trump over Democrat Hillary Clinton, when reported hate crimes nationally soared to 758 incidents. Astrid Galvan, Twin Cities, "Trump words linked to more hate crime? Some experts think so," 7 Aug. 2019 Eighty-one of the world’s top classical musicians were locked out of symphony hall during a rancorous labor dispute. Mary Carole Mccauley, baltimoresun.com, "Why is it so hard to keep an orchestra afloat? The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra is not alone in its woes.," 2 Aug. 2019 Saffron unleashed a rancorous speech about Bykofsky, whose columns have long drawn the ire of some of Philly’s residents. Eli Rosenberg, Washington Post, "A polarizing columnist had a goodbye party after 47 years. Then his nemesis took the mic.," 17 July 2019 This nascent comeback has opened a rancorous breach between California’s agricultural community, which fears losing livestock to wolf attacks, and its environmentalists, who have been galvanized by the idea of an iconic predator resurrected. Ingfei Chen, The New Yorker, "The Persuasive Power of the Wolf Lady," 29 May 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rancorous.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of rancorous

circa 1517, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about rancorous

Statistics for rancorous

Last Updated

15 Oct 2019

Time Traveler for rancorous

The first known use of rancorous was circa 1517

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for rancorous


ran·​cor·​ous | \ ˈraŋ-kə-rəs How to pronounce rancorous (audio) \

Kids Definition of rancorous

: showing deep hatred He gave a rancorous answer.

More from Merriam-Webster on rancorous

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for rancorous

Britannica English: Translation of rancorous for Arabic Speakers

Comments on rancorous

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


not being in agreement or harmony

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Confusing Words—A Quiz

  • alice with tweedle dee and tweedle dum
  • I invented a brand new toaster robot and ______ it "Sir Toasts-a-Lot."
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!