vil·​lain·​ous | \ ˈvi-lə-nəs How to pronounce villainous (audio) \

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 daughter of Lance Reddick's Albert Wesker, the same villainous character known in the video games, Jade fights for survival in a world overrun by the infected. Nick Romano,, 12 May 2022 The rough footage featured Hailee Steinfeld's Spider Gwen teaming up against the villainous Vulture with Issa Rae's Jessica Drew and Oscar Isaac's Miguel O'Hara, both of whom have Spider personas. Patrick Ryan, USA TODAY, 26 Apr. 2022 The root of the problem is not as simple as villainous landlords exploiting a hot market. Abby Vesoulis, Time, 25 Apr. 2022 People have always tended to build narratives around heroic or villainous individuals in history. Radu Magdin, Forbes, 25 Apr. 2022 And John Carter, with its strange land, smart and feisty princess, loyal animal companion, noble group of underdogs, and its mysterious and villainous wizards, was another fairy tale. Richard Newby, The Hollywood Reporter, 11 Mar. 2022 Smith wanted Affleck for Superman and Rooker for the villainous role of Lex Luther, but Peters had a different idea. Zack Sharf, Variety, 8 Jan. 2022 The essay was split into sections detailing the pros and cons of killing a villainous husband. Faith Karimi, CNN, 7 Apr. 2022 The first was that the canticle contains an encomium of Saint Dominic, who in Merwin’s eyes was the most villainous churchman of the Middle Ages. Robert Pogue Harrison, The New York Review of Books, 17 Aug. 2017 See More

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

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Last Updated

21 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Villainous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for villainous


vil·​lain·​ous | \ ˈvi-lə-nəs How to pronounce villainous (audio) \

Kids Definition of villainous

More from Merriam-Webster on villainous

Nglish: Translation of villainous for Spanish Speakers


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