having an extremely bad reputation: an infamous city.
deserving of or causing an evil reputation; shamefully malign; detestable: an infamous deed.
  1. deprived of certain rights as a citizen, as a consequence of conviction of certain offenses.
  2. of or relating to offenses involving such deprivation.

Nearby words

  1. infallibilism,
  2. infallibility,
  3. infallibility, papal,
  4. infallible,
  5. infamize,
  6. infamously,
  7. infamy,
  8. infancy,
  9. infant,
  10. infant apnea

Origin of infamous

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin infām(is) (see infamy) + -ous

Related formsin·fa·mous·ly, adverbin·fa·mous·ness, noun

Can be confusedfamous infamous notorious (see synonym study at famous) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for infamous

British Dictionary definitions for infamous



having a bad reputation; notorious
causing or deserving a bad reputation; shockinginfamous conduct
criminal law (formerly)
  1. (of a person) deprived of certain rights of citizenship on conviction of certain offences
  2. (of a crime or punishment) entailing such deprivation
Derived Formsinfamously, adverbinfamousness, noun

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 infamous



late 14c., from Medieval Latin infamosus, from Latin in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + famosus "celebrated" (see famous). Meaning influenced by Latin infamis "of ill fame" (see infamy). As a legal term, "disqualified from certain rights of citizens in consequence of conviction of certain crimes" (late 14c.). Related: Infamously.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper