[ per-vurs ]
/ pərˈvɜrs /


willfully determined or disposed to go counter to what is expected or desired; contrary.
characterized by or proceeding from such a determination or disposition: a perverse mood.
wayward or cantankerous.
persistent or obstinate in what is wrong.
turned away from or rejecting what is right, good, or proper; wicked or corrupt.

Origin of perverse

First recorded in 1325–75; Middle English, Middle French pervers, “wicked, unnatural,” from Latin perversus “facing the wrong way, askew,” past participle of pervertere “to turn around, overturn”; see pervert

synonym study for perverse

4. See willful.


per·verse·ly, adverbper·verse·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for perverse

British Dictionary definitions for perverse

/ (pəˈvɜːs) /


deliberately deviating from what is regarded as normal, good, or proper
persistently holding to what is wrong
wayward or contrary; obstinate; cantankerous
archaic perverted

Derived forms of perverse

perversely, adverbperverseness, noun

Word Origin for perverse

C14: from Old French pervers, from Latin perversus turned the wrong way
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