- (initial capital letter) a member of a Germanic people who in the 5th century a.d. ravaged Gaul and Spain, settled in Africa, and in a.d. 455 sacked Rome.
- a person who willfully or ignorantly destroys or mars something beautiful or valuable.
- (initial capital letter) of or relating to the Vandals.
- imbued with or characterized by vandalism.
Origin of vandal
Related Words for vandalsdestroyer, looter, thief, plunderer, hoodlum, mischief-maker, pirate, despoiler, pillager, ravager
Examples from the Web for vandals
Contemporary Examples of vandals
Looters and vandals damaged more than a dozen stores and businesses in Oakland, Calif., news reports said.This Week's Riots Are Part of America's Long History of Racial Rage
November 29, 2014
Vandals have defaced them with red paint splotches that look like bullet holes oozing with blood.Defying NATO, Ignoring Ceasefire, Russian-Backed Troops Keep Rolling
September 4, 2014
But there is a strong resolve to vote despite the risk, a fierce determination to vanquish the Vandals.With Poroshenko on the Ukraine Campaign Trail
May 23, 2014
The country is stuck with the vandals, and vandalism is all they can commit, because that is who they are.
As Andrew Sullivan wrote yesterday, a word I re-used on television last night, they are vandals.
Historical Examples of vandals
Much harm was done by the Goths and Vandals of the nineteenth century.English Villages
P. H. Ditchfield
Thus are they doomed to destruction, by a Lilliputian race of Vandals.Tales And Novels, Volume 9 (of 10)
When the warriors came from Frisland with Franks and Vandals.
Goths, Vandals, Huns, each in their own good time had joined in the attack.Nicanor - Teller of Tales
C. Bryson Taylor
On the 15 th December Belisarius met the Vandals in battle-array.Theodoric the Goth
- a person who deliberately causes damage or destruction to personal or public property
- (as modifier)vandal instincts
Word Origin for vandal
- a member of a Germanic people that raided Roman provinces in the 3rd and 4th centuries ad before devastating Gaul (406–409), conquering Spain and N Africa, and sacking Rome (455): crushed by Belisarius at Carthage (533)
Word Origin and History for vandals
1660s, "willful destroyer of what is beautiful or venerable," from Vandals, name of the Germanic tribe that sacked Rome in 455 under Genseric, from Latin Vandalus (plural Vandali), from the tribe's name for itself (Old English Wendlas), from Proto-Germanic *Wandal- "Wanderer."
There does not seem to be in the story of the capture of Rome by the Vandals any justification for the charge of willful and objectless destruction of public buildings which is implied in the word 'vandalism.' It is probable that this charge grew out of the fierce persecution which was carried on by [the Vandal king] Gaiseric and his son against the Catholic Christians, and which is the darkest stain on their characters. ["Encyclopaedia Britannica," 13th ed., 1926]