villainous

adjective
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 And even heroic assumptions need not be villainous. The Economist, "Free exchange Cost-benefit analyses offend against the notion that life is priceless," 16 Nov. 2019 In the wild Goldfish go from cute to villainous when released into the wild. National Geographic, "Goldfish aren't the ho-hum fish you thought they were," 20 Oct. 2019 Hill had reportedly been in talks for a villainous role before bowing out. Tyler Aquilina, EW.com, "Seinfeld star Jason Alexander would like to play Penguin in The Batman," 17 Oct. 2019 Yet, Babur’s villainous status in contemporary Indian politics is a curious chicken-and-egg story. Manavi Kapur, Quartz India, "Babur: A carefully constructed villain who replaced Ravan in Hindu nationalists’ mind," 8 Nov. 2019 Simba's nemesis, his uncle Scar, is played by Spencer Plachy who is smarmy, calculating and ruthless in the most villainous ways. Kathryn Gregory, The Courier-Journal, "'The Lion King' roars into Louisville with stunning costumes and vibrant choreography," 2 Nov. 2019 And while power could amass in a more villainous character than Jeff Bezos, that doesn’t alleviate the anxiety that accompanies such concentration. Franklin Foer, The Atlantic, "Jeff Bezos’s Master Plan," 10 Oct. 2019 British Lancers vow revenge after villainous Surat Khan slaughters every man, woman and child at their outpost. Los Angeles Times, "Movies on TV this week Sept. 1 - 7, 2019: John Wayne in ‘The Searchers’ and more," 30 Aug. 2019 In Heat Vision breakdown Storm Shadow debuted in Hasbro's 1984 toy line as the villainous Cobra’s ninja counterpart to Snake Eyes. Aaron Couch, The Hollywood Reporter, "'G.I. Joe' Spinoff 'Snake Eyes' Finds Its Storm Shadow in 'Warrior' Star," 23 Aug. 2019

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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Time Traveler for villainous

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

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Statistics for villainous

Last Updated

30 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Villainous.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/villainous. Accessed 8 December 2019.

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More Definitions for villainous

villainous

adjective
How to pronounce villainous (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of villainous

: very bad or evil

villainous

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

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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