sin·​ful | \ ˈsin-fəl How to pronounce sinful (audio) \

Definition of sinful

1 : tainted with, marked by, or full of sin : wicked
2 : such as to make one feel guilty a sinful chocolate cake

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from sinful

sinfully \ ˈsin-​fə-​lē How to pronounce sinfully (audio) \ adverb
sinfulness noun

Examples of sinful in a Sentence

It is sinful to steal. chastised by his minister for his sinful behavior

Recent Examples on the Web

Don't lecture on the value of life or whether suicide is viewed by some as a sinful, selfish or angry act. Christopher Harress |,, "Body found hanged from tree near Fairhope in possible suicide," 10 June 2019 In an effort to avoid the flames, believers would avoid sinful behavior and embrace lives of virtue. Scott G. Bruce, WSJ, "Do We Still Need to Believe in Hell?," 13 Sep. 2018 Scandals, language and worldviews that evangelicals would have once considered sinful now appear to be played down, ignored or justified for the sake of influence. Eugene Scott, Washington Post, "'You get a do-over here': Evangelical leaders' apparent double-standard on the alleged Trump-Daniels affair," 23 Jan. 2018 The sad duty of politics is to establish justice in a sinful world. Michael Paterniti, GQ, "Jimmy Carter for Higher Office," 26 June 2018 But after decades of branding female driving as sinful, many are still suspicious of the practice, particularly in conservative places like Qassim. Margherita Stancati And Donna Abdulaziz, WSJ, "Saudi Women Drive Toward More Equality After Ban Is Lifted," 25 June 2018 Suicide is wrongly seen as a character or moral flaw — or even a sinful act. Steven Petrow, Washington Post, "I wasn’t suicidal, until suddenly, terrifyingly I was," 23 June 2018 Saudi families are torn between embracing or resisting changes that clerics and government officials had spent years portraying as sinful. Fortune, "Saudi Arabia Is About to Let Women Drive. Here's Why Some Will Keep Their Driving Licenses a Secret," 22 June 2018 Apparently, ’round about the first of the year, Grandma Ernestine had made seeing my sinful behind fully immersed in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost her top resolution. Lori D. Johnson, The Root, "The Inheritance," 3 June 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about sinful

Statistics for sinful

Last Updated

24 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sinful

The first known use of sinful was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for sinful



English Language Learners Definition of sinful

: wrong according to religious or moral law
: very bad or wicked
informal : extremely enjoyable in a way that makes you feel guilty


sin·​ful | \ ˈsin-fəl How to pronounce sinful (audio) \

Kids Definition of sinful

: being or full of sin : wicked

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on sinful

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sinful

Spanish Central: Translation of sinful

Nglish: Translation of sinful for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sinful for Arabic Speakers

Comments on sinful

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


to form ideas or theories about something

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

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!