/peuhr nish"euhs/, adj.
1. causing insidious harm or ruin; ruinous; injurious; hurtful: pernicious teachings; a pernicious lie.
2. deadly; fatal: a pernicious disease.
3. Obs. evil; wicked.
[1515-25; < L perniciosus ruinous, equiv. to pernici(es) ruin (per- PER- + -nici-, comb. form of nex death, murder (s. nec-) + -ies n. suffix) + -osus -OUS]
Syn. 1. harmful, detrimental, deleterious, destructive, damaging, baneful, noxious, malicious. 2. lethal.

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • pernicious — pernicious, baneful, noxious, deleterious, detrimental are comparable when they mean exceedingly harmful but they differ as to the kind and extent of the potential for harm. Something is either pernicious or baneful which is irreparably harmful… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • pernicious — [pər nish′əs] adj. [Fr pernicieux < L perniciosus < pernicies, destruction < pernecare, to kill < per, thoroughly + necare, to kill: see NECRO ] 1. causing great injury, destruction, or ruin; fatal; deadly 2. Rare wicked; evil… …   English World dictionary

  • Pernicious — Per*ni cious, a. [L. perniciosus, from pernicies destruction, from pernecare to kill or slay outright; per + necare to kill, slay: cf. F. pernicieux. Cf. {Nuisance}, {Necromancy}.] Having the quality of injuring or killing; destructive; very… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Pernicious — Per*ni cious, a. [L. pernix, icis.] Quick; swift (to burn). [R.] Milton. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • pernicious — I adjective adverse, affliciting, baleful, baneful, brutal, calamitous, catastrophic, corrosive, crippling, cruel, damaging, deadly, death bringing, death dealing, deathful, deathly, deleterious, destructive, detrimental, devouring, diabolic,… …   Law dictionary

  • pernicious — 1520s, from M.Fr. pernicios (13c., Fr. pernicieux), from L. perniciosus destructive, from pernicies destruction, death, ruin, from per completely + necis violent death, murder, related to necare to kill, nocere to hurt, injure, harm, noxa …   Etymology dictionary

  • pernicious — [adj] bad, hurtful baleful, damaging, dangerous, deadly, deleterious, destructive, detrimental, devastating, evil, fatal, harmful, iniquitous, injurious, killing, lethal, maleficent, malevolent, malicious, malign, malignant, miasmatic, miasmic,… …   New thesaurus

  • pernicious — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ having a harmful effect, especially in a gradual or subtle way. DERIVATIVES perniciously adverb perniciousness noun. ORIGIN Latin perniciosus destructive …   English terms dictionary

  • pernicious — I (New American Roget s College Thesaurus) adj. malign, ruinous, poisonous, detrimental, injurious, harmful; wicked. See badness. II (Roget s IV) modif. Syn. harmful, deleterious, detrimental, noxious, baneful, damaging, prejudicial, ruinous,… …   English dictionary for students

  • pernicious — adjective Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo French, from Latin perniciosus, from pernicies destruction, from per + nec , nex violent death more at noxious Date: 15th century 1. highly injurious or destructive ; deadly 2. archaic wicked •… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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