Share this entry
pernicious Line breaks: per|ni¦cious
Pronunciation: /pəˈnɪʃəs/

Definition of pernicious in English:


Having a harmful effect, especially in a gradual or subtle way: the pernicious influences of the mass media
More example sentences
  • Physiological laws can explain the harmful and pernicious effects of deep breathing.
  • He's correct that the right of jury nullification trumps any worries about the possible pernicious effects of the drug.
  • Yet this fear of the pernicious effects of property rights did not last for long.


Pronunciation: /pəˈnɪʃəsli/
Example sentences
  • For the public service, the affair demonstrates its fragility in the face of both ministers and, more perniciously, ministerial staffers.
  • She glares at me perniciously, and then turns her back, with a sharp exhalation, and her arms shaking firmly at her sides.
  • Their persistence perniciously influences mood and emotional regulation.
Pronunciation: /pəˈnɪʃəsnəs/
Example sentences
  • That kind of double talk, that perniciousness should be stopped immediately.
  • However, geneticists began criticizing him for his antiscientific declarations regarding the perniciousness of genetics.
  • In fact, its perniciousness has spread well beyond startups.


Late Middle English: from Latin perniciosus 'destructive', from pernicies 'ruin', based on nex, nec- 'death'.

Words that rhyme with pernicious

adventitious, Aloysius, ambitious, auspicious, avaricious, capricious, conspicuous, delicious, expeditious, factitious, fictitious, flagitious, judicious, lubricious, malicious, Mauritius, meretricious, nutritious, officious, propitious, repetitious, seditious, siliceous, superstitious, suppositious, surreptitious, suspicious, vicious
Definition of pernicious in:
Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources