spite·​ful | \ ˈspīt-fəl How to pronounce spiteful (audio) \

Definition of spiteful

: filled with or showing spite : malicious

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from spiteful

spitefully \ ˈspīt-​fə-​lē How to pronounce spiteful (audio) \ adverb
spitefulness noun

Examples of spiteful in a Sentence

the gossip would utter the most vicious things with a spiteful smile
Recent Examples on the Web Yulene Olaizola locates some unbroken ground in the horror genre by focusing on the turbulent heritage of this region and directing that violence back at those responsible for it via the form of a spiteful female demon known as Xtabay. Charles Bramesco, Vulture, 23 June 2021 Sometimes the spiteful gesture is overt, like the father who literally spilled his final child support payment of $800 onto his ex-wife's lawn, entirely in pennies. John Duffy, CNN, 13 June 2021 The formula for their chemistry — the good-cop, bad-cop dynamic uniting the unfiltered Paytas and the more restrained though no less spiteful Klein — also makes for a powerful grudge. Craig Jenkins, Vulture, 17 June 2021 The symptoms, including the formerly sweet-natured Cardona becoming increasingly spiteful toward family members, worsened to the point that Duarte’s brother, a Chicago police officer, could no longer care for her. Usha Lee Mcfarling, STAT, 7 June 2021 Jane Austen, the great artist of spiteful snobbery and petty vengeance, knew this well. Charlie Tyson, The Atlantic, 13 May 2021 To me, the union’s decision is spiteful and only harms students. baltimoresun.com, 12 May 2021 Was this a spiteful push to bring the company down? William Ralston, Wired, 4 May 2021 This fact is crucial to explaining the existence of spiteful motivations. Washington Post, 28 Apr. 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About spiteful

Time Traveler for spiteful

Time Traveler

The first known use of spiteful was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near spiteful

spite fence



See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for spiteful

Last Updated

6 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Spiteful.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spiteful. Accessed 29 Jul. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for spiteful



English Language Learners Definition of spiteful

: having or showing a desire to harm, anger, or defeat someone : having or showing spite


spite·​ful | \ ˈspīt-fəl How to pronounce spiteful (audio) \

Kids Definition of spiteful

: filled with or showing spite : malicious

Other Words from spiteful

spitefully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on spiteful

Nglish: Translation of spiteful for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of spiteful for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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