baleful









baleful


adjective

  1. full of menacing or malign influences; pernicious.
  2. Obsolete. wretched; miserable.

adjective

  1. harmful, menacing, or vindictive
  2. archaic dejected
adj.

Old English bealu-full “dire, wicked, cruel,” from bealu “harm, injury, ruin, evil, mischief, wickedness, a noxious thing,” from Proto-Germanic *balwom (cf. Old Saxon balu, Old Frisian balu “evil,” Old High German balo “destruction,” Old Norse bol, Gothic balwjan “to torment”), from PIE root *bheleu- “to beat.” During Anglo-Saxon times, the noun was in poetic use only (e.g. bealubenn “mortal wound,” bealuĂ°onc “evil thought”), and for long baleful was extinct, but it was revived by modern romantic poets. Related: Balefully.

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