Favorite Words: Nefarious

Here’s another favorite word of mine:

Ne·far·i·ous (adjective)

Definition: flagrantly wicked or impious; evil.

Something about nefarious works for me on every level. I can’t say for certain, but I think this is one of those words that when I first read it (although I don’t remember how long ago that would have been), I knew exactly what it meant before I looked up the definition. It simply sounds like it is up to no good. The minute I read or hear the word, it puts me on edge, makes me glance over my shoulder. It almost leaves a sour taste in my mouth when I say it, and the “s” at the end alludes to the sinister qualities that nefarious encompasses. Although someone with nefarious intentions is not to be trusted, the word itself is a reliable, subtle way to make readers uneasy. It seems unobtrusive, innocuous, but the word lingers in the mind, transforming into a poltergeist that haunts the rest of a story.


What are some of your favorite words?

About Nicole DeGennaro

Burgeoning writer, insatiable reader, and continuous dreamer.
This entry was posted in Favorite words, Random, Random thoughts and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Favorite Words: Nefarious

  1. Dave says:

    Love that last sentence, Nicole. Innocuous and haunts in the same sentence, not to mention poltergeist (a great movie, btw). Off the top of my head I don’t have an evil word like you did, but one of my favorites did come to mind: non sequitur. Funny, the first time I heard this word was on an episode of the original Star Trek many years ago. Loved how it sounded so I had to look it up. Now I use it whenever I have the chance 🙂

    • Not all my favorite words are evil; but nefarious seemed like a good one for this time of year with Halloween right around the corner. 🙂

      Non sequitur is a great word! I can’t remember the first time I came across it, but I love that you learned it from Star Trek. I think sometimes people underestimate how useful watching television can be if you’re really engaged with the show you’re watching.

      And Poltergeist is one of my favorite horror movies!

  2. Christopher says:

    To name a few:

    Elucidate
    Metanoia
    Pernicious
    Pervasive
    Rend
    Stasis
    Tacitly

  3. Pingback: Some Halloween reading | Nicole DeGennaro's blog

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