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sinister

adjective

  1. (alarming)  threatening or foreshadowing evil or tragic developments
    Synonyms: baleful, doomful, forbidding, menacing, minacious, minatorial, minatory, ominous,...
  2. (evil)  stemming from evil characteristics or forces; wicked or dishonorable
    Synonyms: black, dark. Similar to: evil
  3. (heraldry)  on or starting from the wearer's left
    Topic: heraldry. Similar to: sinistral

Etymology summary

"prompted by malice or ill-will", from Old French sinistre "contrary,...
(Source: Online Etymology)  [more]

Definition references

Collins Dictionary:

sinister | ominous [synonym, sense-specific] | sinisterly [adverb, derived]

threatening or suggesting evil or harm; ominous | evil or treacherous, especially in a mysterious way | [postpositive, heraldry] of, on, or starting ... (21 of 434 words, 5 definitions, 10 usage examples, pronunciation)

www​.collinsdictionary​.com​/dictionary​/english​/sinister

Merriam-Webster:

sinister | sinistrous [archaic] | unfavorable [synonym, sense-specific] | fraudulent [synonym, sense-specific] | unlucky [synonym, sense-specific] | baleful [synonym, sense-specific] | dire [synonym, sense-specific] | direful [synonym, sense-specific] | doomy [synonym, sense-specific] | ...

[archaic] "unfavorable", "unlucky" | [archaic] "fraudulent" | singularly evil or productive of evil | of, relating to, or situated to the left or on ... (21 of 315 words, 6 definitions, 4 usage examples, pronunciation)

www​.merriam-webster​.com​/dictionary​/sinister

Wikipedia:

Sinister [disambiguation]

may refer to: The left side (viewers right side) of an escutcheon or coat of arms in heraldry, see dexter and sinister | Left-handedness | Bend (heraldry), Bend sinister, heraldic charge | Baton sinister, diminutive of the bend sinister | In film: ... (38 of 238 words, 24 definitions)

en​.wikipedia​.org​/wiki​/Sinister

Oxford Dictionary:

sinister | dexter [antonym, sense-specific] | sinisterly [derived] | sinisterness [derived]

giving the impression that something harmful or evil is happening or will happen | evil or criminal | [attributive, archaic, heraldry] : of, on, or ... (23 of 115 words, 3 definitions, 2 usage examples, pronunciation)

oxforddictionaries​.com​/definition​/english​/sinister

New World Dictionary:

sinister | sinistrous | sinisterly [adverb, related] | sinisterness [noun, related]

[archaic] on, to, or toward the left-hand side; left ; [heraldry] on the left side of a shield (the right as seen by the viewer) | threatening harm, ... (27 of 107 words, 4 definitions, 3 usage examples, pronunciation)

www​.yourdictionary​.com​/sinister

Wiktionary:

sinister | fiendish | conniving | evil | sinistre [obsolete, sense-specific] | dexter [antonym, sense-specific] | perverse [synonym, sense-specific] | dishonest [synonym, sense-specific]

Inauspicious, ominous, unlucky, illegitimate (as in bar sinister). | Evil or seemingly evil; indicating lurking danger or harm. | Of the left side. | [heraldry] On the left side of a shield from the wearer's standpoint, and the right side to the viewer... (40 of 103 words, 5 definitions, 10 usage examples, pronunciations)

en​.wiktionary​.org​/wiki​/sinister

American Heritage Dictionary:

sinister | sinisterly [adverb, related] | sinisterness [noun, related]

Suggesting or threatening evil | Presaging trouble; ominous | Attended by or causing disaster or inauspicious circumstances. | On the left side; left. ... (20 of 66 words, 5 definitions, 2 usage examples, pronunciation)

www​.yourdictionary​.com​/sinister

Random House Dictionary:

sinister

threatening or portending evil, harm, or trouble; ominous. | bad, evil, base, or wicked; fell. | unfortunate; disastrous; unfavorable. | of or on the ... (21 of 64 words, 5 definitions, 3 usage examples, pronunciation)

dictionary​.infoplease​.com​/sinister

Macmillan British Dictionary:

sinister

threatening to do harm or to do something evil (9 of 49 words, 2 usage examples, pronunciation)

www​.macmillandictionary​.com​/dictionary​/british​/sinister

Cambridge Dictionary:

sinister

making you feel that something bad or evil might happen (10 of 29 words, 2 usage examples, pronunciations)

dictionary​.cambridge​.org​/dictionary​/british​/sinister

Encarta Dictionary:

sinister

threatening or suggesting malevolence, menace, or harm | on the left side of a heraldic shield as seen by the holder (20 of 56 words, 2 definitions, pronunciation)

encarta​.msn​.com​/dictionary 1861734954​/definition​.html  [offline]

Etymology references

Online Etymology:

sinister

First use: early 15th century

Origin: "prompted by malice or ill-will", from Old French sinistre "contrary, unfavorable, to the left", from Latin sinister "left, on the left ... (24 of 137 etymology words)

www​.etymonline​.com​/index​.php term=sinister

New World Dictionary:

sinister

Origin: Middle English sinistre from Latin sinister, left-hand, or unlucky (side), originally lucky (side) from Indo-European base ... (16 of 47 etymology words)

www​.yourdictionary​.com​/sinister

Merriam-Webster:

sinister

First use: 15th century

Origin: Middle English sinistre, from Anglo-French senestre on the left, from Latin sinistr-, sinister on the left side, unlucky, inauspicious

www​.merriam-webster​.com​/dictionary​/sinister

Collins Dictionary:

sinister

First use: 15th century

Origin: from Latin sinister on the left-hand side, considered by Roman augurs to be the unlucky one

www​.collinsdictionary​.com​/dictionary​/english​/sinister

Oxford Dictionary:

sinister

Origin: late Middle English (in the sense "malicious, underhand"): from Old French sinistre or Latin sinister "left"

oxforddictionaries​.com​/definition​/english​/sinister

Wiktionary:

sinister

Origin: Middle English sinistre ("unlucky"), from Old French sinistra ("left"), from Latin sinestra ("left hand").

en​.wiktionary​.org​/wiki​/sinister

American Heritage Dictionary:

sinister

Origin: Middle English sinistre, unfavorable, from Old French, from Latin sinister, on the left, unlucky.

www​.yourdictionary​.com​/sinister

Encarta Dictionary:

sinister

First use: 15th century

Origin: French from Latin, "left"; from the superstition that the left side is unlucky

encarta​.msn​.com​/dictionary 1861734954​/definition​.html  [offline]

Audio references

Wiktionary:

sinister

Audio: North American English pronunciation of "sinister"

en​.wiktionary​.org​/wiki​/sinister

Collins Dictionary:

sinister

Audio: North American English pronunciation of "sinister"

www​.collinsdictionary​.com​/dictionary​/english​/sinister

Macmillan British Dictionary:

sinister

Audio: British English pronunciation of "sinister"

www​.macmillandictionary​.com​/dictionary​/british​/sinister

Macmillan American Dictionary:

sinister

Audio: North American pronunciation of "sinister"

www​.macmillandictionary​.com​/dictionary​/american​/sinister

Cambridge Dictionary:

sinister

Audio 1: British English pronunuciation of "sinister"

Audio 2: North American English pronunuciation of "sinister"

dictionary​.cambridge​.org​/dictionary​/british​/sinister

the Free Dictionary:

sinister

Audio 1: North American English pronunciation of "sinister"

Audio 2: British English pronunciation of "sinister"

Audio 3: North American English pronunciation of "sinister" by speech synthesizer

www​.thefreedictionary​.com​/sinister

Google Dictionary:

sinister

Audio: English pronunciation of "sinister"

www​.google​.com​/#hl=en&tbs=dfn​:1&fp=1&q=sinister

Merriam-Webster Pronunciation:

sinister

Audio: North American pronunciation of "sinister"

www​.merriam-webster​.com​/audio​.php file=sinist​01 word=sinister

YourDictionary Audio:

sinister

Audio: North American English pronunciation of "sinister" by speech synthesizer

www​.yourdictionary​.com​/sinister

freedictionary.org:

sinister

Audio: North American English pronunciation of "sinister" by speech synthesizer

freedictionary​.org​/ Query=sinister

Page last updated: 2013-06-26

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