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nefarious

[ ni-fair-ee-uhs ]
/ nɪˈfɛər i əs /
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SEE MORE SYNONYMS FOR nefarious ON THESAURUS.COM

adjective

extremely wicked or villainous; iniquitous: a nefarious plot.

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RELATED WORDS

Nearby words

neep, neese, neet, nef, nefandous, nefarious, nefariously, nefazodone, nefertem, nefertiti, nefretete

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
SYNONYMS FOR nefarious
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for nefariousness

  • Mary gratified her eager mind by careful studies in this chosen line of nefariousness.

    Within the Law|Marvin Dana
  • The nefariousness of the scheme thus revealed infuriated Barmouth.

  • There was a nefariousness about the new suggestion that proved very attractive in Blentmouth.

    Tristram of Blent|Anthony Hope

British Dictionary definitions for nefariousness

nefarious

/ (nɪˈfɛərɪəs) /

adjective

evil; wicked; sinful
Derived Formsnefariously, adverbnefariousness, noun

Word Origin for nefarious

C17: from Latin nefārius, from nefās unlawful deed, from 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 nefariousness

nefarious


adj.

c.1600, from Latin nefarius "wicked, abominable, impious," from nefas "crime, wrong, impiety," from ne- "not" (see un-) + fas "right, lawful, divinely spoken," related to fari "to speak" (see fame (n.)). Related: Nefariously.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper