Definition of malign in English:

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Pronunciation: /məˈlīn/


1Evil in nature or effect; malevolent: she had a strong and malign influence
More example sentences
  • We should not believe that this malign aspect of human nature which sleeps in all of us has gone away or will ever go away.
  • The place is populated by endearing eccentrics who eat seal-flipper pie and brood darkly on the sea's malign nature.
  • The American Empire emerges, then, not as a complex phenomenon with some good effects and some malign ones.
harmful, evil, bad, baleful, hostile, inimical, destructive, malignant, injurious
literary malefic, maleficent
1.1 archaic (Of a disease) malignant.
Example sentences
  • Therapeutic measures such as bleeding and purging, designed originally to get rid or excess or malign humours, continued to be used.
  • But it was no match for the malign tumor, first detected just last spring, his colleagues said.
  • After hours spent quelling the fire with cold water, ‘he succumbed to a fever so malign that in just a few days he expired in the icy embrace of death.’


[with object]
Speak about (someone) in a spitefully critical manner: don’t you dare malign her in my presence
More example sentences
  • But he denied the army had been maligning politicians to discredit them.
  • He was also taken aback because he felt the PR consultant was maligning someone who was dead.
  • Now that we have Camilla installed, her champion wrote, should we still be maligning this lady?
defame, slander, libel, blacken someone's name/character, smear, vilify, speak ill of, cast aspersions on, run down, traduce, denigrate, disparage, slur, abuse, revile
informal badmouth, dis, knock, talk smack
formal derogate, calumniate



Pronunciation: /məˈlīnər/
Example sentences
  • It's not simply, as the maligners would have it, a moneygrabbing procedure.
  • In recent years, the internet has provided a new medium for malcontents and maligners to spread fiction as fact to a wide swath of the public through mass distributed e-mails.
  • Kevin also gives himself the opportunity to vent a lot of anger and frustration out at the film industry, Internet maligners and, um, more Internet maligners.


Pronunciation: /məˈliɡnədē/
Example sentences
  • He is laughing, with a touch of anger in his laughter, but no triumph, no malignity.
  • Despite their obvious malignity, so pronounced as to have raised clinical questions, Mr Latham's own diagnoses are not entirely faulty.
  • The result is a rising tide of neglect, cruelty, sadism, and joyous malignity that staggers and appalls me.


Pronunciation: /məˈlīnlē/
Example sentences
  • But don't let them lurk deep in your soul's most secret crannies, malignly pulling strings and making you act out in absurd ways.
  • What unites the tyrannical of this world is the human instinct to obey, and to conform, an instinct malignly exploited by evil leaders.
  • However, the other woman is not helping and is staring malignly at me.


Middle English: via Old French maligne (adjective), malignier (verb), based on Latin malignus 'tending to evil', from malus 'bad'.

Words that rhyme with malign

align, assign, benign, brine, chine, cline, combine, condign, confine, consign, dine, divine, dyne, enshrine, entwine, fine, frontline, hardline, interline, intertwine, kine, Klein, line, Main, mine, moline, nine, on-line, opine, outshine, pine, Rhein, Rhine, shine, shrine, sign, sine, spine, spline, stein, Strine, swine, syne, thine, tine, trine, twine, Tyne, underline, undermine, vine, whine, wine

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: ma·lign

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