devil: Meaning and Definition of
Pronunciation: (dev'ul), [key]
— n., v., -iled, -il•ing -illed, -il•ling.
- (sometimes cap.) the supreme spirit of evil; Satan.
- a subordinate evil spirit at enmity with God, and having power to afflict humans both with bodily disease and with spiritual corruption.
- an atrociously wicked, cruel, or ill-tempered person.
- a person who is very clever, energetic, reckless, or mischievous.
- a person, usually one in unfortunate or pitiable circumstances: The poor devil kept losing jobs through no fault of his own.
- Also calleda young worker below the level of apprentice in a printing office.
- any of various mechanical devices, as a machine for tearing rags, a machine for manufacturing wooden screws, etc.
- (in deck or hull planking) any of various seams difficult to caulk because of form or position.
- any of various portable furnaces or braziers used in construction and foundry work.
- between two undesirable alternatives; in an unpleasant dilemma.
- extremely difficult or annoying; hellish: I had a devil of a time getting home through the snow.
- to give deserved credit even to a person one dislikes: To give the devil his due, you must admit that she is an excellent psychologist.
- to fail completely; lose all hope or chance of succeeding.
- to become depraved.
- (an expletive expressing annoyance, disgust, impatience, etc.)
- to leave the least able or fortunate persons to suffer adverse consequences; leave behind or to one's fate: They ran from the pursuing mob and let the devil take the hindmost.
- to ruin completely; spoil: The financial crisis played the devil with our investment plans.
- to cause a commotion or disturbance.
- to celebrate wildly; revel.
- to make an emphatic protest or take drastic measures.
- (used as an emphatic expletive or mild oath to express disgust, anger, astonishment, negation, etc.): What the devil do you mean by that?
- trouble to be faced; mischief in the offing: If conditions don't improve, there will be the devil to pay.
- to annoy; harass; pester: to devil Mom and Dad for a new car.
- to tear (rags, cloth, etc.) with a devil.
- to prepare (food, usually minced) with hot or savory seasoning: to devil eggs.
- devil (Thesaurus)