- 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
SynonymsSee more synonyms for perverse on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for perverseness
Perverseness prompted Theodora to say, 'The baby at the lodge is twice the size.'Heartsease
Charlotte M. Yonge
And then came, as if to my final and irrevocable overthrow, the spirit of Perverseness.Lords of the Housetops
Perverseness in this error hath brought the church to the misery which it endureth.A Christian Directory (Part 4 of 4)
- deliberately deviating from what is regarded as normal, good, or proper
- persistently holding to what is wrong
- wayward or contrary; obstinate; cantankerous
- archaic perverted
Word Origin and History for perverseness
mid-14c., "wicked," from Old French pervers "unnatural, degenerate; perverse, contrary" (12c.) and directly from Latin perversus "turned away, contrary, askew," figuratively, "turned away from what is right, wrong, malicious, spiteful," past participle of pervertere "to corrupt" (see pervert (v.)). The Latin word is glossed in Old English by forcerred, from past participle of forcyrran "to avoid," from cierran "to turn, return." Meaning "wrong, not in accord with what is accepted" is from 1560s; sense of "obstinate, stubborn" is from 1570s. It keeps the non-sexual senses of pervert (v.) and allows the psychological ones to go with perverted. Related: Perversely; perverseness.