E'VIL, a. e'vl. [Heb. to be unjust or injurious, to defraud.]1. Having bad qualities of a natural kind; mischievous; having qualities which tend to injury, or to produce mischief.Some evil beast hath devoured him. Gen.37.2. Having bad qualities of a moral kind; wicked; corrupt; perverse; wrong; as evil thoughts; evil deeds; evil speaking; an evil generation.3. Unfortunate; unhappy; producing sorrow, distress, injury or calamity; as evil tidings; evil arrows; evil days.
E'VIL, n. Evil is natural or moral. Natural evil is any thing which produces pain, distress, loss or calamity, or which in any way disturbs the peace, impairs the happiness, or destroys the perfection of natural beings.Moral evil is any deviation of a moral agent from the rules of conduct prescribed to him by God, or by legitimate human authority; or it is any violation of the plain principles of justice and rectitude.
There are also evils called civil, which affect injuriously the peace or prosperity of a city or state; and political evils, which injure a nation, in its public capacity.
All wickedness, all crimes, all violations of law and right are moral evils. Diseases are natural evils, but they often proceed from moral evils.2. Misfortune; mischief; injury.There shall no evil befall thee. Ps.91.A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself. Prov.22.3. Depravity; corruption of heart, or disposition to commit wickedness; malignity.The heart of the sons of men is full of evil. Eccles.9.4. Malady; as the king's evil or scrophula.
E'VIL, adv. [generally contracted to ill.]1. Not well; not with justice or propriety; unsuitable.Evil it beseems thee.2. Not virtuously; not innocently.3. Not happily; unfortunately.It went evil with his house.4. Injuriously; not kindly.The Egyptians evil entreated us, and afflicted us.
In composition, evil, denoting something bad or wrong, is often contracted to ill.