- extremely wicked or villainous; iniquitous: a nefarious plot.
Origin of nefarious
1595–1605; < Latin nefārius wicked, vile, equivalent to nefās offense against divine or moral law (ne- negative prefix + fās law, right) + -ius -ious, with intervocalic s > r
SynonymsSee more synonyms for nefarious on Thesaurus.com
flagitious, heinous, infamous; vile, atrocious, execrable.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for nefariously
If the Government had not nefariously interposed, it could not have passed.Charles Sumner; his complete works, volume 5 (of 20)
He opened his eyes at my nefariously obtained knowledge, and still more when I produced the paper written from his dictation.There is no Death
Hull was in possession, and refused to yield an acre of the lands he had so nefariously acquired.Masterpieces of Mystery
- evil; wicked; sinful
C17: from Latin nefārius, from nefās unlawful deed, from nē not + fās divine law
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 nefariously
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper