- (sometimes initial capital letter) the supreme spirit of evil; Satan.
- a subordinate evil spirit at enmity with God, and having power to afflict humans both with bodily disease and with spiritual corruption.
verb (used with object), dev·iled, dev·il·ing or (especially British) dev·illed, dev·il·ling.
- to fail completely; lose all hope or chance of succeeding.
- to become depraved.
- (an expletive expressing annoyance, disgust, impatience, etc.)
- to cause a commotion or disturbance.
- to celebrate wildly; revel.
- to make an emphatic protest or take drastic measures.
Origin of devil
Related formsout·dev·il, verb (used with object), out·dev·iled, out·dev·il·ing or (especially British) out·dev·illed, out·dev·il·ling.sub·dev·il, nounun·der·dev·il, noun
British Dictionary definitions for devil of a
- to fail or become dissipated
- (interjection) used to express annoyance with the person causing it
- to cause a commotion
- to make a great protest
- used in such phrases as what the devil, where the devil, etc
- an exclamation of anger, surprise, disgust, etc
verb -ils, -illing or -illed or US -ils, -iling or -iled
Word Origin for devil
Culture definitions for devil of a
Idioms and Phrases with devil of a (1 of 2)
devil of a
Also, one devil or the devil of a; hell of a. Infernally annoying or difficult, as in This is a devil of an assembly job, or She had one devil of a time getting through the traffic, or I had a hell of a morning sitting in that doctor's office. The first expression dates from the mid-1700s. The variant is a couple of decades newer and its precise meaning depends on the context. For example, We had a hell of a time getting here invariably means we had a very difficult or annoying time, but He is one hell of a driver could mean that he is either very good or very bad (see hell of a, def. 2).
Idioms and Phrases with devil of a (2 of 2)
In addition to the idioms beginning with devil
- devil and deep blue sea
- devil of a
- devil take the hindmost, the
- devil to pay, the
- between a rock and a hard place (devil and deep blue sea)
- full of it (the devil)
- give someone hell (the devil)
- give the devil his due
- go to hell (the devil)
- luck of the devil
- play the devil with
- raise Cain (the devil)
- speak of the devil