[ noh-tawr-ee-uhs, nuh- ]
See synonyms for: notoriousnotoriouslynotoriousness on

  1. widely and unfavorably known: a notorious gambler.

  2. publicly or generally known, as for a particular trait: a newspaper that is notorious for its sensationalism.

Origin of notorious

First recorded in 1540–50; from Medieval Latin nōtōrius “well known, public,” from Late Latin nōtōria “a notice, news, intelligence” and nōtōrium “indictment, (criminal) charge,” equivalent to nō(scere) “to get to know” + -tōrius adjective suffix; see notify, -tory1

Other words for notorious

Other words from notorious

  • no·to·ri·ous·ly, adverb
  • no·to·ri·ous·ness, noun

Words that may be confused with notorious

Words Nearby notorious Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use notorious in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for notorious


/ (nəʊˈtɔːrɪəs) /

  1. well-known for some bad or unfavourable quality, deed, etc; infamous

  2. rare generally known or widely acknowledged

Origin of notorious

C16: from Medieval Latin notōrius well-known, from nōtus known, from noscere to know

Derived forms of notorious

  • notoriety (ˌnəʊtəˈraɪɪtɪ) or notoriousness, noun
  • notoriously, adverb

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