vicious (adj.) early 14c. (implied in viciously), "of the nature of vice, wicked," from Anglo-Fr. vicious, O.Fr. vicieus, from L. vitiosus "faulty, defective, corrupt," from vitium "fault" (see VICE (Cf. vice) (n.1)). Meaning "inclined to be savage or dangerous" is first recorded 1711 (originally of animals, especially horses); that of "full of spite, bitter, severe" is from 1825. In law, "marred by some inherent fault" (late 14c.), hence also this sense in logic (c.1600); Cf. vicious circle in reasoning (c.1792), which was given a general sense of "a situation in which action and reaction intensify one another" by 1839.

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

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  • Vicious — Vi cious, a. [OF. vicious, F. vicieux, fr. L. vitiosus, fr. vitium vice. See {Vice} a fault.] 1. Characterized by vice or defects; defective; faulty; imperfect. [1913 Webster] Though I perchance am vicious in my guess. Shak. [1913 Webster] The… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • vicious — vicious, villainous, iniquitous, nefarious, flagitious, infamous, corrupt, degenerate are comparable when they mean highly reprehensible or offensive in character, nature, or conduct. Vicious may imply an addiction to or connection with vice or… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • vicious — [vish′əs] adj. [ME < OFr vicieus < L vitiosus, full of faults, corrupt, vicious < vitium,VICE1] 1. a) given to or characterized by vice; evil, corrupt, or depraved b) tending to deprave or corrupt; pernicious [vicious interests] c)… …   English World dictionary

  • vicious — I adjective abandoned, acrimonious, atrocious, barbarous, beastly, blameworthy, brutal, censurable, contrary, corrupt, criminal, cruel, dangerous, debased, degenerate, demoralized, depraved, devilish, diabolical, disgraceful, evil, evil minded,… …   Law dictionary

  • vicious — [adj1] corrupt, wrong abandoned, abhorrent, atrocious, bad, barbarous, base, contaminated, cruel, dangerous, debased, degenerate, degraded, demoralized, depraved, diabolical, faulty, ferocious, fiendish, flagitious, foul, heinous, immoral,… …   New thesaurus

  • vicious — ► ADJECTIVE 1) cruel or violent. 2) (of an animal) wild and dangerous. 3) literary immoral. DERIVATIVES viciously adverb viciousness noun. ORIGIN Latin vitiosus, from vitium vice …   English terms dictionary

  • Vicious — Sid Vicious (eigentlich John Simon Ritchie; * 10. Mai 1957 in London, England; † 2. Februar 1979 in New York, USA) war ein britischer Punkrock Musiker und der Bassist der Band Sex Pistols. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Leben 1.1 Musikalisch …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • vicious — 01. Be careful of their dog; it can be quite [vicious] towards strangers. 02. A young child was [viciously] attacked by a dog while playing in the park yesterday. 03. He was injured by a [vicious] kick from an opposing player. 04. The young man… …   Grammatical examples in English

  • vicious — viciously, adv. viciousness, n. /vish euhs/, adj. 1. addicted to or characterized by vice; grossly immoral; depraved; profligate: a vicious life. 2. given or readily disposed to evil: a vicious criminal. 3. reprehensible; blameworthy; wrong: a… …   Universalium

  • vicious — adjective Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo French vicios, from Latin vitiosus full of faults, corrupt, from vitium vice Date: 14th century 1. having the nature or quality of vice or immorality ; depraved 2. defective, faulty; also invalid 3 …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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