Definition of villainess in English:


Syllabification: vil·lain·ess
Pronunciation: /ˈvilənəs


  • (In a film, novel, or play) a female character whose evil actions or motives are important to the plot: she’s portrayed as a glowering villainess, accompanied by ominous music as she enters
    More example sentences
    • The once clear demarcation in Dracula between heroine and villainess is made uncomfortably fluid by Stoker's parallel descriptions in these stories.
    • It's a shame the script is more interested in her playing a one-dimensional bitchy villainess instead of a woman who has been faced with a horrible ethical dilemma.
    • The songs seem irrelevant but they justify their existence at the end, when heroine and villainess square off in a moral and physical beauty contest: a play-off that's also a sing-off.


late 16th century: from villain + -ess1.

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