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devil Meaning, Definition & Usage

  1. noun (Judeo-Christian and Islamic religions) chief spirit of evil and adversary of God; tempter of mankind; master of Hell
    Prince of Darkness; Lucifer; the Tempter; Beelzebub; Satan; Old Nick.
  2. noun an evil supernatural being
    daemon; demon; daimon; fiend.
  3. noun a word used in exclamations of confusion
    deuce; dickens.
    • what the devil
    • the deuce with it
    • the dickens you say
  4. noun a rowdy or mischievous person (usually a young man)
    heller; hellion.
    • he chased the young hellions out of his yard
  5. noun a cruel wicked and inhuman person
    ogre; demon; monster; fiend.
  6. verb cause annoyance in; disturb, especially by minor irritations
    annoy; rag; bother; vex; irritate; nettle; rile; get to; nark; get at; gravel; chafe.
    • Mosquitoes buzzing in my ear really bothers me
    • It irritates me that she never closes the door after she leaves
  7. verb coat or stuff with a spicy paste
    • devilled eggs

Dev"il noun
AS. deófol, deóful; akin to G. eufel, Goth. diabaúlus; all fr. L. diabolus the devil, Gr. the devil, the slanderer, fr. to slander, calumniate, orig., to throw across; across + to throw, let fall, fall; cf. Skr. gal to fall. Cf. Diabolic.
  1. The Evil One; Satan, represented as the tempter and spiritual of mankind.
    [Jesus] being forty days tempted of the devil. Luke iv. 2.
    That old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world. Rev. xii. 9.
  2. An evil spirit; a demon.
    A dumb man possessed with a devil. Matt. ix. 32.
  3. A very wicked person; hence, any great evil. "That devil Glendower." "The devil drunkenness." Shak.
    Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil? John vi. 70.
  4. An expletive of surprise, vexation, or emphasis, or, ironically, of negation. Low
    The devil a puritan that he is, . . . but a timepleaser. Shak.
    The things, we know, are neither rich nor rare, But wonder how the devil they got there. Pope.
  5. (Cookery) A dish, as a bone with the meat, broiled and excessively peppered; a grill with Cayenne pepper.
    Men and women busy in baking, broiling, roasting oysters, and preparing devils on the gridiron. Sir W. Scott.
  6. (Manuf.) A machine for tearing or cutting rags, cotton, etc.
Dev"il transitive verb
imperfect & past participle Deviled or Devilled; present participle & verbal noun Deviling or Devilling
  1. To make like a devil; to invest with the character of a devil.
  2. To grill with Cayenne pepper; to season highly in cooking, as with pepper.
    A deviled leg of turkey. W. Irving.

Webster 1913

"Rowling never met an adverb she didn't like."

-Stephen King on J.K Rowling's excessive use of adverbs.

Fear not the Adverb Hell!

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