English edit

Etymology edit

From Middle English perverse, pervers, from Old French pervers, from Latin perversum (thoroughly turned), past participle of pervertere, from per- (thoroughly) + vertere (to turn).

Pronunciation edit

Adjective edit

perverse (comparative more perverse or perverser, superlative most perverse or perversest)

  1. Turned aside while against something, splitting off from a thing.
    • 1872, The Gentleman's Magazine - Volume 232, page 367:
      Any man who succeeds in diverting the public taste, or in turning back a perverse stream which will flow in the direction of the ditch, leaves a mark, as it were, and cannot be overlooked by posterity.
    • 2008, Harrison Mujica-Jenkins, The Ninth Hour, page 221221:
      But in the same sense are modern Nietzsche's screams against the perverse (diverted) diffusion of these elemental pleas to reason for “reasons,” for the reasons—and place—of our fall in nonsense.
    • 2013, Robert Saucy, Minding the Heart: The Way of Spiritual Transformation:
      The diverted or perverse way is also not an easy path to walk. It is rightly called “crooked” and “twisting.”
  2. Morally wrong or evil; wicked; perverted.
    • 1967, Alexander Lowen, The Betrayal of the Body, U.S.A.: Macmillan Publishing Company, published 1969, page 13:
          Looking at Barbara one would have considerable difficulty detecting a perverse side to her nature. Her expression was demure, shy, and apprehensive. But she recognized the demonic aspect of her personality and admitted it.
          I felt most alive when I felt most perverse. At college, sleeping with boys had a perverse quality. I slept with a boy friend of one of my girl friends, and I was proud of it. I bragged about it because I had done something perverse. Another time, I slept with a man, fat and ugly, who paid me for it. I was very proud. I felt I had the ability to do something different.
  3. Obstinately in the wrong; stubborn; intractable.
  4. Wayward; vexing; contrary.
    • 2013 July 20, “Welcome to the plastisphere”, in The Economist, volume 408, number 8845:
      [The researchers] noticed many of their pieces of [plastic marine] debris sported surface pits around two microns across. [] Closer examination showed that some of these pits did, indeed, contain bacteria, and that in several cases these bacteria were dividing and thus, by the perverse arithmetic of biological terminology, multiplying.
  5. (law, of a verdict) Ignoring the evidence or the judge's opinions.

Derived terms edit

Translations edit

Noun edit

perverse (plural perverses) (archaic)

  1. (geometry) A chiral opposite of something; a mirror image with opposite handedness.
    • 1884, Robert Edgar Allardice, Spherical Geometry[1]:
      If two antipodal points move continuously on the sphere, they trace out what are called symmetric figures. These figures have corresponding elements equal, and are equal in area, but are not in general superposable. The one is, in fact, the perverse of the other.

Derived terms edit

Verb edit

perverse (third-person singular simple present perverses, present participle perversing, simple past and past participle perversed)

  1. (nonstandard) To pervert.
    • 1545, John Bale, Image of Both Churches:
      This rule hath been always for the commodity of that kingdom, where as the powers have been thus by them perversed.
    • 1852 February 6, Louis Kossuth, Address delivered before the General Assembly of Ohio:
      And though impartial history now and then cast the alow (halo) of a martyr over an unsuccessful patriot's grave; yet even that was not always sure; tyrants often perversed history, sullied by adulation or by fear; — but whetever that last verdict might have been; for him who dared to struggle against despotism, when he struggled in vain, there was no honor on earth; victorious tyranny marked the front of virtue with the brand of a criminal.
    • 2013, Winter Laake, Enter-The Vampire:
      That I have loved you My most puissant disciple I am the fabric of life and death Humanity has perversed the truth
    • 2014, Maurits Zwankhuizen, The Desert Rose Inn:
      A second sun burst for an instant at first, Then glittered and glinted and twilight perversed And limbs limned in red quenched the sands of their thirst, The limbs of a human by all the Fates cursed;

Anagrams edit

Dutch edit

Pronunciation edit

Adjective edit

perverse

  1. inflection of pervers:
    1. masculine/feminine singular attributive
    2. definite neuter singular attributive
    3. plural attributive

French edit

Pronunciation edit

Adjective edit

perverse

  1. feminine singular of pervers

Anagrams edit

German edit

Pronunciation edit

Adjective edit

perverse

  1. inflection of pervers:
    1. strong/mixed nominative/accusative feminine singular
    2. strong nominative/accusative plural
    3. weak nominative all-gender singular
    4. weak accusative feminine/neuter singular

Italian edit

Adjective edit

perverse

  1. feminine plural of perverso

Latin edit

Participle edit

perverse

  1. vocative masculine singular of perversus

References edit

  • perverse”, in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • perverse”, in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • perverse in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire illustré latin-français, Hachette