Definition of villainous in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈvilənəs/


1Relating to, constituting, or guilty of wicked or criminal behavior: his group of villainous accomplices are wreaking havoc on the city
More example sentences
  • Britain has become a bolt-hole for villainous individuals and criminal organisations from all over the world.
  • Just as the novel rewards villainous behavior, so it promotes guilty identification that allows the reader to enjoy moral transgression by association.
  • What barbarous, villainous, and depraved acts did he commit that labor leaders and heads of national liberal groups denounce him as the enemy of minorities, the poor, women, and the environment?
wicked, evil, iniquitous, sinful, nefarious, vile, foul, monstrous, outrageous, atrocious, abominable, reprehensible, hateful, odious, contemptible, horrible, heinous, egregious, diabolical, flagitious, fiendish, vicious, murderous;
criminal, illicit, unlawful, illegal, lawless;
immoral, corrupt, degenerate, sordid, depraved, dishonest, dishonorable, unscrupulous, unprincipled
informal crooked, bent, lowdown, dirty, shady
dated dastardly
1.1 informal Extremely bad or unpleasant: a villainous smell
More example sentences
  • Victor, a tall wiry man with beady eyes and a villainous curly black goatee, announced calmly, unsmiling.
  • Owen backed up a step as Solstice rubbed up against him, indulging in a villainous grin.
  • He shot Janine a villainous grin as he pulled the car from his parking spot, she gave him an unamused look, but it became a playful grin seconds later.



Pronunciation: /ˈvilənəslē/
Example sentences
  • Recent provocative and hooliganistic statements have villainously slandered our nation and threatened the joyful happiness of our people.
  • ‘Now,’ He grinned villainously, ‘You're going to do anything and everything that I want.’
  • We are simply enclosed in a media-dominated world of signs, villainously generated by capitalism to synthesize our desires, which only really refer to one another within an entrapping chain of ideas.


Example sentences
  • For some of us he was the main reason for tuning in - a fact not lost on casting directors who appreciate that Rickman's own brand of dark villainousness attracts more than a few female fans.
  • The story remains, as Thackeray subtitled it, one ‘Without a Hero,’ but by removing the very villainousness of his villain, Nair also removes any reason for us to be interested in her.
  • Their villainousness is so striking that the reader of the plays cannot help contemplating the dark side of human nature and exploring the motives of their evil behavior.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: vil·lain·ous

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