Malevolent – Definition, Meaning, Synonyms & Antonyms

Malevolent – Definition, Meaning, Synonyms & Antonyms

Malevolent meaning refers to a strong desire to harm others or an evil intent, often characterized by malicious actions or thoughts.

History of the Word Malevolent

Historical Usage

Malevolent has been used throughout history to describe individuals, actions, or forces with harmful intent or evil disposition. It appears in various literary works, religious texts, and philosophical discussions as a concept that represents the opposite of benevolence, which is characterized by goodwill and kindness.

Modern Usage

In contemporary language, it describes individuals or entities displaying maleficence, evil intent, or a desire to cause harm. You can use it in literature, psychology, and everyday language to denote a wicked nature.

English (Malevolent As Adjective)


From the Latin "male" (badly) + "volens" (wishing), "malevolent" signifies a strong desire to harm or evil intent.


Pronounced as: /məˈlɛv.ə.lənt/ (muh-lev-uh-luhnt)

Forms of Malevolent

Form Example
Comparative Degree More malevolent
Superlative Degree Most malevolent
Adverb Malevolently
Noun Malevolence

Derived Terms

  • Malevolence (noun)
  • Malevolently (adverb)

Translations of Malevolent

  • Spanish: Malevolente
  • French: Malveillant
  • German: Bösartig
  • Italian: Malevolo
  • Portuguese: Malevolente
  • Russian: Злонамеренный (Zlonamerennyy)
  • Chinese (Simplified): 恶意的 (Èyì de)
  • Japanese: 悪意のある (Akui no aru)
  • Malevolent meaning in Hindi: दुराचारी (Duraachari)
  • Urdu: برائی کرنے والا (Burai Karne Wala)


  • Malicious
  • Evil
  • Wicked
  • Hostile
  • Maleficent
  • Sinister


  • Benevolent
  • Kind-hearted
  • Altruistic
  • Compassionate
  • Good-natured
  • Friendly

Examples Sentence

  • The malevolent dictator suppressed dissent with ruthless measures.
  • The malevolent presence in the haunted house sent shivers down the visitors' spines.
  • The villain's malevolent laughter sent shivers down spines.

FAQs (People May Also Ask)

Is malevolent always associated with evil intent?

Yes, it describes a strong desire to harm or cause suffering, often characterized by malicious actions or thoughts.

Can malevolently be used to describe actions?

Yes, malevolence is an adverb used to describe actions carried out with ill intent or malice.

Are there any positive connotations to malevolence?

No, it consistently conveys negative meanings related to harmful intent or wickedness.

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