Definition of malignant adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//məˈlɪɡnənt//
    ; NAmE NAmE//məˈlɪɡnənt//
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  1. 1(of a tumour or disease) that cannot be controlled and is likely to cause death malignant cells opposite non-malignant compare benign
  2. 2(formal) having or showing a strong desire to harm somebody synonym malevolent
  3. Word Originmid 16th cent. (also in the sense ‘likely to rebel against God or authority’): from late Latin malignant- ‘contriving maliciously’, from the verb malignare. The term was used in its early sense to describe Royalist sympathizers during the English Civil War.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: malignant

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