villain NOUN 1) a person who is guilty or capable of a crime or wickedness; a wrongdoer. 2) a character in a novel or play whose evil actions or motives are important to the plot.
DERIVATIVES villainous adjective villainy noun.
ORIGIN originally in the sense «a rustic»: from Old French vilein, from Latin villa 'country house' .

English terms dictionary. 2015.

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  • Villainous — Vil lain*ous, a. [Written also villanous.] [1913 Webster] 1. Base; vile; mean; depraved; as, a villainous person or wretch. [1913 Webster] 2. Proceeding from, or showing, extreme depravity; suited to a villain; as, a villainous action. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • villainous — index bad (offensive), contemptible, delinquent (guilty of a misdeed), felonious, heinous, inexpiable, iniquitous …   Law dictionary

  • villainous — c.1300, from O.Fr. vileneus, from villain; see VILLAIN (Cf. villain) …   Etymology dictionary

  • villainous — *vicious, iniquitous, nefarious, flagitious, infamous, corrupt, degenerate Analogous words: debased, depraved, perverted (see under DEBASE): atrocious, *outrageous, heinous: dissolute, profligate, *abandoned …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • villainous — [adj] criminal atrocious, bad, corrupt, crooked, cruel, culpable, deplorable, depraved, diabolical, dirty, evil, felonious, hateful, ignoble, illegal, illicit, immoral, iniquitous, knavish, lawless, low, mean, nefarious, peccant, reprehensible,… …   New thesaurus

  • villainous — [vil′ənəs] adj. 1. of, like, or characteristic of a villain; evil; wicked 2. very bad, disagreeable, or objectionable villainously adv …   English World dictionary

  • villainous — villainously, adv. villainousness, n. /vil euh neuhs/, adj. 1. having a cruel, wicked, malicious nature or character. 2. of, pertaining to, or befitting a villain: villainous treachery. 3. outrageously base, wicked, or vile: a villainous attack… …   Universalium

  • villainous — adjective Date: 14th century 1. a. befitting a villain (as in evil or depraved character) < a villainous attack > b. being or having the character of a villain ; depraved < the villainous foe > 2. highly objectionable ; wretched Synony …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • villainous — [[t]vɪ̱lənəs[/t]] ADJ GRADED: usu ADJ n A villainous person is very bad and willing to harm other people or break the law in order to get what he or she wants. ...her villainous father …   English dictionary

  • villainous — adjective 1 literary evil: He gave a villainous leer. 2 informal unpleasant or nasty: a villainous smell …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • villainous — adjective a taut thriller in which the hero makes a subtle shift from virtuous to villainous Syn: wicked, evil, iniquitous, sinful, nefarious, vile, foul, monstrous, outrageous, atrocious, abominable, reprehensible, hateful, odious, contemptible …   Thesaurus of popular words

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