full of menacing or malign influences; pernicious.
Obsolete. wretched; miserable.

before 1000; Middle English; Old English bealofull. See bale2, -ful

balefully, adverb
balefulness, noun

baleful, baneful.

1. harmful, malign, injurious, detrimental; evil, wicked; deadly. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To balefully
World English Dictionary
baleful (ˈbeɪlfʊl)
1.  harmful, menacing, or vindictive
2.  archaic dejected

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

O.E. bealu-full, from bealu "harm, injury, ruin, evil, mischief, wickedness, a noxious thing," from P.Gmc. *balwom (cf. O.S. balu, O.Fris. balu "evil," O.H.G. balo "destruction," O.N. bol, Gothic balwjan "to torment"), from PIE base *bheleu- "to beat." During Anglo-Saxon times, in poetic use only (e.g.
bealubenn "mortal wound," bealuðonc "evil thought"), and for long it was extinct, but revived by modern romantic poets.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Example sentences
We watch a snake-necked plesiosaur as it sprawls beached and dying, its head swaying balefully.
Should you spy one, eye it balefully and shake your head.
And there are things more balefully creasy than the wedgy two-door into which the same drivetrain has been shoehorned.
In a moment it might roar balefully through the trees.
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature