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pernicious

[per-nish-uh s] /pərˈnɪʃ əs/
adjective
1.
causing insidious harm or ruin; ruinous; injurious; hurtful:
pernicious teachings; a pernicious lie.
2.
deadly; fatal:
a pernicious disease.
3.
Obsolete. evil; wicked.
Origin of pernicious
1515-1525
1515-25; < Latin perniciōsus ruinous, equivalent to pernici(ēs) ruin (per- per- + -nici-, combining form of nex death, murder (stem nec-) + -iēs noun suffix) + -ōsus -ous
Related forms
perniciously, adverb
perniciousness, noun
unpernicious, adjective
unperniciously, adverb
Synonyms
1. harmful, detrimental, deleterious, destructive, damaging, baneful, noxious, malicious. 2. lethal.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for perniciously
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Certain physiological processes come to have for him an unclean flavour which is yet perniciously attractive.

    The Nervous Child Hector Charles Cameron
  • He explained that Allen had been a feeble speculator, but plausible, of personal good faith, and perniciously sanguine.

  • And probably I've behaved more foolishly and perniciously than ever you will.

  • These indefinite expressions operated powerfully and perniciously on his imagination.

  • In these matters his aims were generous, if his methods were perniciously mistaken.

    Shelley Francis Thompson
  • He approached me with outstretched hand; he was perniciously polite; his ingratiating smile fired my soul with a lust of blood.

  • Thou hast devilishly and perniciously abstained from coming to church, and thou hast been guilty of the sin of preaching.

    The Coming of the King James Hocking
  • He wore outside a dogged look, as if fighting against some inward feeling; he entered looking down most perniciously at the floor.

  • In the case of truth, untrue beliefs work as perniciously in the long run as true beliefs work beneficially.

    Pragmatism William James
British Dictionary definitions for perniciously

pernicious

/pəˈnɪʃəs/
adjective
1.
wicked or malicious: pernicious lies
2.
causing grave harm; deadly
Derived Forms
perniciously, adverb
perniciousness, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin perniciōsus, from perniciēs ruin, from per- (intensive) + nex death
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
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Word Origin and History for perniciously

pernicious

adj.

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.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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perniciously in Medicine

pernicious per·ni·cious (pər-nĭsh'əs)
adj.
Tending to cause death or serious injury; deadly.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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