Definition of vigilante in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌvijəˈlan(t)ē/


A member of a self-appointed group of citizens who undertake law enforcement in their community without legal authority, typically because the legal agencies are thought to be inadequate.
Example sentences
  • A community of spam vigilantes constantly is improving free programs such as SpamAssassin.
  • Health authorities or even vigilantes ought to have shut it down years ago.
  • The thugs, vigilantes and enforcers have to end their activities - and be seen to do so.


Mid 19th century: from Spanish, literally 'vigilant'.

Words that rhyme with vigilante

Alicante, andante, ante, anti, Ashanti, Bramante, Chianti, Dante, dilettante, Fante, Ferranti, infante, scanty, shanty (US chanty), spumante, Zante

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: vig·i·lan·te

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