vil·lain·ous | \ˈvi-lə-nəs \

Definition of villainous 

1a : befitting a villain (as in evil or depraved character) a villainous attack

b : being or having the character of a villain : depraved the villainous foe

2 : highly objectionable : wretched

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Other Words from villainous

villainously adverb
villainousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for villainous

vicious, villainous, iniquitous, nefarious, corrupt, degenerate mean highly reprehensible or offensive in character, nature, or conduct. vicious may directly oppose virtuous in implying moral depravity, or may connote malignancy, cruelty, or destructive violence. a vicious gangster villainous applies to any evil, depraved, or vile conduct or characteristic. a villainous assault iniquitous implies absence of all signs of justice or fairness. an iniquitous system of taxation nefarious suggests flagrant breaching of time-honored laws and traditions of conduct. the nefarious rackets of organized crime corrupt stresses a loss of moral integrity or probity causing betrayal of principle or sworn obligations. city hall was rife with corrupt politicians degenerate suggests having sunk to an especially vicious or enervated condition. a degenerate regime propped up by foreign powers

Examples of villainous in a Sentence

villainous behavior that made him one of the most notorious figures in history and gave rise to the legend of Dracula

Recent Examples on the Web

The Red Sox have become somewhat villainous (three World Series in 15 years will do that, not to brag) despite Mookie Betts’ intense likability. Charlotte Wilder,, "America Would Love These Celtics if They Weren’t From Boston," 17 May 2018 Pinchot will recur as George Hawthorne, Baxer High's villainous, puritanical principal. Lesley Goldberg, The Hollywood Reporter, "Netflix's 'Riverdale' Companion 'Sabrina' Enlists Bronson Pinchot," 8 Mar. 2018 Used wisely, even the show's more villainous quotes can make adequately cheeky Instagram captions., "Game Of Thrones One-Liners That Make Killer Instagram Captions," 12 July 2018 After his aggressive, and villainous, performance against England, there were a number of Spurs fans on social media eagerly awaiting the the player's arrival in the Premier League., "Spurs Fans Applaud Potential Signing Wilmar Barrios Following Jordan Henderson Headbutt," 4 July 2018 Reynolds reins his voice into a villainous quiver before the full band blasts through the incendiary chorus. Bobby Olivier, Billboard, "Imagine Dragons' 10 Greatest Songs: Critic's Picks," 26 June 2018 Swift has ditched her signature blonde before, always for the sake of a music video, and usually while playing some stereotypically villainous role. Andrea Park, Allure, "Taylor Swift Has Red Hair Now and She Looks Totally Different," 7 June 2018 Fiery diva Floria Tosca and her rebellious lover, painter Mario Cavaradossi, run afoul of Baron Scarpia, the villainous chief of police, and the result is ultimately tragic and dramatic. Greg Crawford, Detroit Free Press, "Plan your weekend: 'Tosca,' ventriloquist Darci Lynne, Afro-Caribbean cook-off," 4 Apr. 2018 Whishaw voiced the titular adorable bear in Paddington and Paddington 2, the latter of which also starred Grant as a villainous actor named Phoenix Buchanan. Yohana Desta, HWD, "Hugh Grant Gets Comfortable with Controversy in A Very English Scandal," 29 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Last Updated

19 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for villainous

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

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English Language Learners Definition of villainous

: very bad or evil


vil·lain·ous | \ˈvi-lə-nəs \

Kids Definition of villainous

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More from Merriam-Webster on villainous

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for villainous

Spanish Central: Translation of villainous

Nglish: Translation of villainous for Spanish Speakers

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