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ferocious

[fuh-roh-shuh s]
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adjective
  1. savagely fierce, as a wild beast, person, action, or aspect; violently cruel: a ferocious beating.
  2. extreme or intense: a ferocious thirst.

Origin of ferocious

1640–50; < Latin ferōc-, stem of ferōx savage, fierce (fer(us) wild (see feral1, fierce) + -ōx having such an appearance; akin to -opsis) + -ious
Related formsfe·ro·cious·ly, adverbfe·ro·cious·ness, nounnon·fe·ro·cious, adjectivenon·fe·ro·cious·ly, adverbnon·fe·ro·cious·ness, nounun·fe·ro·cious, adjectiveun·fe·ro·cious·ly, adverb

Synonyms

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1. rapacious. See fierce.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for ferociousness

Historical Examples

  • You are radically polite; this impetuosity and ferociousness is simply the sincerity which is the basis of a proper deportment.

    The Luck of Roaring Camp and Other Tales

    Bret Harte

  • The brutality of the police, equalled in ferociousness the massacre of the Yeomanry Cavalry.

    The Battle of The Press

    Theophila Carlile Campbell

  • There was ferociousness in the heart of the Indian, but Grace's voice had stayed his hand.

  • His personal misfortunes will prove the anarchy of the government and the ferociousness of the times.

  • There was a fascination in his manner that made the ferociousness of his antagonist subside into impotence.

    Caleb Williams

    William Godwin


British Dictionary definitions for ferociousness

ferocious

adjective
  1. savagely fierce or cruela ferocious tiger; a ferocious argument
Derived Formsferociously, adverbferocity (fəˈrɒsɪtɪ) or ferociousness, noun

Word Origin

C17: from Latin ferox fierce, untamable, warlike
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for ferociousness

ferocious

adj.

1640s, from Latin ferocis, oblique case of ferox "fierce, wild-looking" (see ferocity). Related: Ferociously; ferociousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper