Pathology. changed to or being of an unnatural or abnormal kind: a perverted interest in death.
turned from what is right; wicked; misguided; distorted.
affected with or caused by perversion.

Origin of perverted

First recorded in 1660–70; pervert + -ed2
Related formsper·vert·ed·ly, adverbper·vert·ed·ness, nounnon·per·vert·ed, adjectivenon·per·vert·ed·ly, adverbun·per·vert·ed, adjectiveun·per·vert·ed·ly, adverb


[verb per-vurt; noun pur-vert]

verb (used with object)

to affect with perversion.
to lead astray morally.
to turn away from the right course.
to lead into mental error or false judgment.
to turn to an improper use; misapply.
to misconstrue or misinterpret, especially deliberately; distort: to pervert someone's statement.
to bring to a less excellent state; vitiate; debase.
Pathology. to change to what is unnatural or abnormal.
to convert or persuade to a religious belief regarded as false or wrong.


a person who practices sexual perversion.
Pathology. a person affected with perversion.
a person who has been perverted, especially to a religious belief regarded as erroneous.

Origin of pervert

1300–50; (v.) Middle English perverten < Latin pervertere to overturn, subvert, equivalent to per- per- + vertere to turn; (noun) noun use of obsolete pervert perverted
Related formsper·vert·er, nounper·vert·i·ble, adjectiveper·vert·i·bil·i·ty, nounper·vert·i·bly, adverbnon·per·vert·i·ble, adjective

Synonyms for pervert Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for perverted

Historical Examples of perverted

British Dictionary definitions for perverted



deviating greatly from what is regarded as normal or right; distorted
of or practising sexual perversion
incorrectly interpreted
Derived Formspervertedly, adverbpervertedness, noun


verb (pəˈvɜːt) (tr)

to use wrongly or badly
to interpret wrongly or badly; distort
to lead into deviant or perverted beliefs or behaviour; corrupt
to debase

noun (ˈpɜːvɜːt)

a person who practises sexual perversion
Derived Formsperverter, nounpervertible, adjective

Word Origin for pervert

C14: from Old French pervertir, from Latin pervertere to turn the wrong way, from per- (indicating deviation) + vertere to turn
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 perverted

1660s, "turned from the right way," past participle adjective from pervert (v.). With implied sexual sense by 1897.



c.1300 (transitive), "to turn someone aside from a right religious belief to a false or erroneous one," from Old French pervertir "pervert, undo, destroy" (12c.) and directly from Latin pervertere "overthrow, overturn," figuratively "to corrupt, subvert, abuse," literally "turn the wrong way, turn about," from per- "away" (see per) + vertere "to turn" (see versus).

Related: Perverted; perverting. Replaced native froward, which embodies the same image. Old English had mishweorfed "perverted, inverted," an identical formation to the Latin word using native elements.



1660s, "one who has forsaken a doctrine or system regarded as true, apostate," from pervert (v.). Psychological sense of "one who has a perversion of the sexual instinct" is attested from 1897 (Havelock Ellis), originally especially of homosexuals.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

perverted in Medicine




Deviating from what is considered normal or correct.
Of, relating to, or practicing sexual perversion.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.