V2 Vocabulary Building Dictionary



Definition: 1. the desire to harm someone; 2. bitterness, hatred, or ill will

Synonyms: malice, evil, spite, rancor, vengeance, hatred

Antonyms: benevolence, kindness

Tips: Malevolence comes from the Latin male, "evil" and volence, "to wish." Thus, both the noun malevolence and its adjective form, malevolent, denote wishing evil upon someone. Also, think of the word benevolence, which is a tendency to be kind, good and generous. Remember, benign is "good and without harm" and malignant is "harmful or wanting to do evil." So benevolence is the desire and tendency to do good, while malevolence is the desire to do bad or evil. Other mal derived words include malignant, malign, malediction, and malefactor.

Usage Examples:

He was a malevolent dictator who garnered satisfaction from imposing his will at the expense of his rivals and subjects. (malicious, vindictive) adjective

Although he never openly acted them out, he harbored feelings of malevolence towards his stepmother for many years. (spite, hatred, rancor)

He gave her a malevolent look from across the room that made her shiver with fear. (vicious, rancorous) adjective

He was born with malevolence in his heart and became a malefactor in his adult life. (malice, evil)

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