Definition of wicked in US English:



  • 1Evil or morally wrong.

    ‘a wicked and unscrupulous politician’
    • ‘These aristocrats are wicked, all right, but they're not terribly decadent.’
    • ‘So I seek absolution from my wicked thoughts, and I promise to be calm and serene from now on.’
    • ‘‘Blacker than night were the eyes of Makiko, wicked and evil while casting her spell,’ sang Powell.’
    • ‘Her character demands that she appears a little wholesome, so we don't believe she's capable of anything wicked.’
    • ‘This darkly comic fable tells how the revenge plans for a New Year's Eve party go horribly wrong, as two wicked sisters plan the downfall of the third and most successful one.’
    • ‘Her eye caught the chest by the door, and she went to it hesitantly, feeling that its contents had been tainted somehow by the wicked man with the dark hair.’
    • ‘Once the sins pass, the wicked are no more - not because they have come to harm, but because they are no longer truly wicked.’
    • ‘To call the steward dishonest, shameful, unjust, unrighteous, or wicked is too harsh.’
    • ‘They began as innocent children and were gradually rendered wicked and evil and absolutely corrupt by the treatment they received at the hands of those they most trusted!’
    • ‘It makes people depressed and pessimistic; it is the wicked thing that politicians do quite routinely.’
    • ‘‘That evil, wicked idiot,’ Dorian said after class as he and Jane walked together down the hallway.’
    • ‘Sikhs believe that God is inside every person, no matter how wicked they appear, and so everyone is capable of change.’
    • ‘As usual the hunters show complete disregard, even contempt for people who live in this village many of whom, like me, are totally opposed to this wicked and barbaric pastime.’
    • ‘Yes, this kind of research is illegal and wicked.’
    • ‘Those who are good are too often portrayed as evil; indefensibly wicked acts are made less so by the way they are described.’
    • ‘One can only marvel at the fiendish and diabolical powers of darkness under Hillary's wicked command.’
    • ‘Where the defendant's comment imputes corrupt, dishonest or wicked motives to the claimant the position is different.’
    • ‘While they waited for the disease to burn itself out, they entertained each other with racy stories about wicked priests and randy nuns.’
    • ‘‘It is a graphic reminder that we are living in a world with evil and wicked persons, like vultures waiting for their prey,’ he said.’
    • ‘When they do appear it is often in highly stereotypical guises - evil hags, wicked stepmothers or outrageous prostitutes.’
    evil, sinful, immoral, wrong, morally wrong, wrongful, bad, iniquitous, corrupt, black-hearted, ungodly, unholy, irreligious, unrighteous, sacrilegious, profane, blasphemous, impious, base, mean, vile
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    1. 1.1 Intended to or capable of harming someone or something.
      ‘he should be punished for his wicked driving’
      • ‘He smiled pleasantly and held up a black-gloved hand to show a short, wicked knife with a taped handle and curving blue blade.’
      • ‘To fend them off, he transforms himself into Paperboy, an African American superhero who punishes with paper objects and wicked paper cuts.’
    2. 1.2informal Extremely unpleasant.
      ‘despite the sun, the wind outside was wicked’
      • ‘A wicked wind blew through the town, snapping shutters still open, throwing leaves into faces, pushing to the ground folks hurrying home in the falling darkness.’
      • ‘Wicked weather passing through Staten Island is responsible this evening for scattered power outages.’
      disagreeable, unpleasant, foul, fierce, bad, nasty, irksome, troublesome, annoying, irritating, vexatious, displeasing, uncomfortable, distressing, hateful, detestable, miserable, abominable, execrable, odious, invidious, objectionable
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    3. 1.3 Playfully mischievous.
      ‘Ben has a wicked sense of humor’
      • ‘She's not a dressy girl, which I like, but she's flirty and engaging, and has a wicked sense of humor.’
      • ‘Rocky had a wicked gleam in his eye and urged them on toward the door.’
      • ‘As we all know, Sally had a wicked sense of humour.’
      • ‘Even with a language barrier, it was always possible to communicate through smiles and jollity, for the Egyptians have a very wicked sense of humour.’
      • ‘The actor grins and suddenly there's a wicked gleam in her eye.’
      • ‘She turns around and sees my wicked grin and immediately wonders what is going on.’
      • ‘In person, the foreboding man in the trench coat on the back cover of The Manhattan Hunt Club is a jovial, mischievous elf with a wicked sense of humor and a love of gossip.’
      • ‘In fact, it's not a bad way to get to the highlights of the day's news because most Australian political cartoonists have the ability to get to the heart of an issue with a wicked sense of humour or irony.’
      • ‘But the presence of his young son brought welcome vitality to the household of the Princess, known for her vivacious character and wicked sense of humour.’
      • ‘Her husband, George, is an attorney with a wicked sense of humor and an often unique conservative slant on things.’
      • ‘Always, in the past, you could rely on wicked one-liners and glorious cameo roles.’
      • ‘But the mirth is fleeting and the hysterical laughter, I suspect, is triggered more by nervous tension than by a wicked sense of humour.’
      • ‘My first old Tom cat, Jimmy, who had a wicked sense of humor, would often wait for me to get every piece in place and then casually knock it all down with a flick of one big paw.’
      • ‘He was a real wind up merchant with a wicked sense of humour - he had everyone in hysterics and he will be very sadly missed.’
      • ‘Doris, her elegant mother, had Sue's same wicked sense of humour.’
      • ‘Bert grins, as only he can, with a sparkle of wicked glee and supercilious superiority.’
      • ‘He didn't give her time to respond, only flashed her a brilliant, wicked smile.’
      • ‘She had a droll voice and a rather wicked sense of humor.’
      • ‘He moved a little in his sleep, a delightfully wicked smile coming on to his lips.’
      • ‘Karen, as far I could make out, was a lovely girl, very kind, but with a cheeky, wicked sense of humour that matched the impish glint in her eye.’
      mischievous, playful, naughty, impish, roguish, arch, rascally, rakish, puckish, waggish, devilish, tricksy, cheeky, raffish, teasing
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    4. 1.4informal Excellent; wonderful.
      ‘Sophie makes wicked cakes’
      • ‘You might have a cool PDA and a wicked wallet, but if you're heading to work with a huge bulge in your pants and your lunch in a plastic bag, then you've got a lot to learn.’
      • ‘Whatever the image, the established church just doesn't seem cool, groovy, wicked or whatever the youth of today use to replace the word ‘good’.’
      • ‘The only positive note was wicked DJ-mixing some fabulous tunes.’
      • ‘This album doesn't light my fire like their 1991 release ‘Soar’ but it's a fine recording by a wicked talented band.’
      • ‘Or hey, maybe you can say all you want to say to the world with ‘The Scream’ or one wicked awesome dirt bike.’
      • ‘The first time had been fast and wicked and wonderful.’
      • ‘I hope to have photos and an entry about my new carnivorous flora soon, as they are (pardon the Californian) wicked cool.’
      • ‘This weblog genealogy thing is wicked awesome, but I'm not so sure how to go about it.’
      • ‘But it's a wicked fine considering what I've been doing to avoid causing a mess.’
      • ‘Whatever the case may be, anything that beeps and buzzes when it moves, and talks like an omniscient Speak & Spell, is automatically wicked boss cool.’
      • ‘Last season was wicked awesome, as we say here in New England.’
      • ‘The whole park is surreal - check out the wicked cool photos these gigantic swimming pools with faux-stone monuments of gods watching over.’
      • ‘Ibiza on the other hand has wicked cool deejays and hot British chicks on holiday.’
      • ‘This is wicked cool: to be able to jump from a social software system to your own blog - meshing the public and private spaces.’
      • ‘I thought it was a wicked cool quote but I never understood it.’
      • ‘All these are wicked awesome local acts, but instead we are relegated to radio-friendly unit shifters.’
      • ‘Fabulous bar with a wicked vibe and not too pretentious.’
      • ‘You spend a lot of your life waiting for something powerful and wonderful to come along and take you on a wicked ride.’
      • ‘Canada's kids' channel YTV brings you all the news that's both wicked and awesome.’
      • ‘Granted, there's enough wicked fretwork and cool guitar noise throughout this record to both recall past glories and satiate those in need of a modern rock fix.’
      excellent, superb, superlative, first-rate, first-class, superior, outstanding, remarkable, dazzling, marvellous, magnificent, wonderful, splendid, admirable, noteworthy, impressive, fine, exquisite, exceptional, glorious, sublime, peerless, perfect, of the first water
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  • no rest (or peace) for the wicked

    • humorous The speaker's heavy workload or lack of tranquility is due to their sinful life.

      • ‘‘Well there is no rest for the wicked,’ replied the barmaid.’
      • ‘Like the old proverb goes, there's no rest for the wicked.’
      • ‘I guess you all know the saying… ‘There is no rest for the wicked!’’
      • ‘There is no rest for the wicked - and those who hunt them.’
      • ‘‘Well, no rest for the wicked,’ mutters Hayley as she pulls out her own gun and checks it.’
      • ‘There is no rest for the wicked in this job - I'm back on the road tomorrow.’
      • ‘But there's no rest for the wicked, as Anne will start almost immediately on the planning for next year's event.’
      • ‘Fresh from their ‘Dramathon’ performance at the Fairgreen Shopping Centre in Carlow last Saturday, it's no rest for the wicked for Carlow Youth Theatre, which is now preparing for a number of events over the coming months.’
      • ‘But there is no rest for the wicked, and before I knew it I had to leave the house and make my way to school for the cursed exams.’
      • ‘My money, for what it's worth, would be on the wee guy - but it turns out there is no peace for the wicked down at Kingsholm.’


Middle English: probably from Old English wicca ‘witch’ + -ed.