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mephistophelean

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj mephistophelean showing the cunning or ingenuity or wickedness typical of a devil "devilish schemes","the cold calculation and diabolic art of some statesmen","the diabolical expression on his face","a mephistophelian glint in his eye"
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • prop. a Mephistophelean Pertaining to, or resembling, the devil Mephistopheles, “a crafty, scoffing, relentless fiend;” devilish in character or aspect; crafty; showing cunning or ingenuity or wickedness; as, a mephistophelean glint in his eye.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • mephistophelean Same as Mephistophelian.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Mephistophelean cynical, scoffing, malicious
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Etymology

Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Ety. unknown; prob. formed from Gr. , not, phōs (phot-), light, philos, loving.

Usage

In literature:

Lammle stands with folded arms, Mephistophelean in a corner, with Georgiana and Fledgeby.
"Our Mutual Friend" by Charles Dickens
Mendoza, with a Mephistophelean smile, bows profoundly.
"Man And Superman" by George Bernard Shaw
There was a Mephistophelean restitution in not striving to wrest the Eclipse from Lucretia with The Dutchman.
"Thoroughbreds" by W. A. Fraser
The Kaiser remains faithful to the Mephistophelean form.
"Mr. Punch's History of the Great War" by Punch
In a flash there recurred to him every incident of those dramatic interviews with the Mephistophelean doctor.
"The Doctor of Pimlico" by William Le Queux
This personage was clothed in red, and with black horns and Mephistophelean countenance was made to look as much like a fiend as possible.
"Patty's Friends" by Carolyn Wells
They were handsome, too, in a Mephistophelean style.
"Saddle and Mocassin" by Francis Francis Jr.
His Mephistophelean behavior, or something, made me giddy.
"Yellowstone Nights" by Herbert Quick
But reflection brought a Mephistophelean suggestion of comfort.
"The Burglars' Club" by Henry A. Hering
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In news:

With his linebacker's physique, slicked-back Bobby Darin hair and a Mephistophelean goatee that predates slacker fashion, Busboy looks like some boyish union of Wolfman Jack and a pro wrestler.
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