Are yams and sweet potatoes the same?
early 15c., from Middle French pernicios (13c., Modern French pernicieux) and directly from Latin perniciosus "destructive," from pernicies "destruction, death, ruin," from per- "completely" (see per) + necis "violent death, murder," related to necare "to kill," nocere "to hurt, injure, harm," noxa "harm, injury" (see noxious). Related: Perniciously; perniciousness.
pernicious per·ni·cious (pər-nĭsh'əs)
Tending to cause death or serious injury; deadly.