scan·​dal·​ous ˈskan-də-ləs How to pronounce scandalous (audio)
: libelous, defamatory
scandalous allegations
: offensive to propriety or morality : shocking
scandalous behavior
scandalously adverb
scandalousness noun

Example Sentences

Sex was a scandalous subject back then. The magazine published scandalous pictures of the movie star. The high price of gas these days is scandalous. She was spreading scandalous rumors about him.
Recent Examples on the Web But its technology never came close to working like Holmes and Balwani boasted, resulting in Theranos' scandalous collapse and a criminal case that shined a bright light on Silicon Valley greed and hubris. CBS News, 17 Mar. 2023 Katie Maloney is sharing her thoughts on the scandalous affair between her Vanderpump Rules costars Tom Sandoval and Raquel Leviss. Dory Jackson, Peoplemag, 16 Mar. 2023 In Last Night in New York, Columbia shares a story of a scandalous affair that his father witnessed one night in the Hamptons between Janet Lee Bouvier, Jackie Kennedy and Lee Radziwell's mother, and another gentleman. Isiah Magsino, Town & Country, 14 Feb. 2023 There is a steady stream of scandalous stories around the NFL. Robin Rose Parker, Washington Post, 20 Sep. 2022 People in the study weren’t actually showering — (that’s a bit too scandalous for a research study). Sara Novak, Discover Magazine, 8 Nov. 2022 In his court filing, Prince Mbonisi raised scandalous allegations that had been detailed in the South African press. John Eligon, New York Times, 16 Aug. 2022 But in the post-2020 GOP, scandalous allegations and offensive comments can be worn like a badge of honor—if Republican voters even believe what’s reported. Charlotte Alter, Time, 17 May 2022 Despite Jamie and Claire’s attempts to dispel the scandalous allegation, a rebellion based on rumors begins to build around them at the Ridge. Sharareh Drury, Variety, 10 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'scandalous.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1575, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of scandalous was in 1575

Dictionary Entries Near scandalous

Cite this Entry

“Scandalous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


scan·​dal·​ous ˈskan-d(ə-)ləs How to pronounce scandalous (audio)
: harmful to one's reputation : defamatory
denied the truth of the scandalous rumors
: shocking
scandalous behavior
scandalously adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on scandalous

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