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miscreant

[mis-kree-uh nt] /ˈmɪs kri ənt/
adjective
1.
depraved, villainous, or base.
2.
Archaic. holding a false or unorthodox religious belief; heretical.
noun
3.
a vicious or depraved person; villain.
4.
Archaic. a heretic or infidel.
Origin of miscreant
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English < Middle French mescreant unbelieving, equivalent to mes- mis-1 + creantLatin crēdent- credent
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for miscreant
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The same house can't contain that miscreant and me any longer.

  • The heart of the miscreant swelled with indignation and disappointment.

    Gomez Arias Joaqun Telesforo de Trueba y Coso
  • Unless I were a miscreant, I could not but be grateful for such kindness.

    Cyropaedia Xenophon
  • You are thinking, 'Here is the miscreant, the scoundrel, who destroyed our battleship!'

    The Destroyer Burton Egbert Stevenson
  • What miscreant hero had dared perform this sacrilegious exploit?

    Tom, Dick and Harry Talbot Baines Reed
  • But a miscreant in Shakespeares time had nothing of the meaning which now it has.

    English Past and Present Richard Chevenix Trench
  • To appeal for mercy would delight the miscreant and not aid the prisoner.

    Two Boys in Wyoming Edward S. Ellis
British Dictionary definitions for miscreant

miscreant

/ˈmɪskrɪənt/
noun
1.
a wrongdoer or villain
2.
(archaic) an unbeliever or heretic
adjective
3.
evil or villainous
4.
(archaic) unbelieving or heretical
Word Origin
C14: from Old French mescreant unbelieving, from mes-mis-1 + creant, ultimately from Latin credere to believe
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
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Word Origin and History for miscreant
adj.

c.1300, "non-Christian, pagan, infidel;" early 15c., "heretical, unbelieving," from Old French mescreant "disbelieving" (Modern French mécréant), from mes- "wrongly" (see mis- (2)) + creant, present participle of creire "believe," from Latin credere (see credit). Meaning "villainous" is from 1590s.

n.

late 14c., "heathen, Saracen," from miscreant (adj.) or from Old French mescreant, which also had a noun sense of "infidel, pagan, heretic." Sense of "villain" first recorded 1590 in Spenser.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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