• WordNet 3.6
    • adj perversive tending to corrupt or pervert
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The alarm clock was not invented by the Marquis de Sade, as some suspect, but rather by a man named Levi Hutchins of Concord, New Hampshire, in 1787. Perversity, though, characterized his invention from the beginning. The alarm on his clock could ring only at 4 am. Rumor has it that Hutchins was murdered by his wife at 4:05 am on a very dark and deeply cold New England morning.
    • a Perversive Tending to pervert.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • perversive Tending or having power to pervert or corrupt.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Perversive tending to pervert
    • ***


  • Arthur Schopenhauer
    “In the sphere of thought, absurdity and perversity remain the masters of the world, and their dominion is suspended only for brief periods.”
  • Joseph Addison
    “No oppression is so heavy or lasting as that which is inflicted by the perversion and exorbitance of legal authority.”
  • Robert Graves
    Robert Graves
    “What we now call finance is, I hold, an intellectual perversion of what began as warm human love.”
  • Warren Buffett
    “There seems to be some perverse human characteristic that likes to make easy things difficult.”
  • Susan Sontag
    “Perversity is the muse of modern literature.”
  • Mark Van Doren
    Mark Van Doren
    “The job of the poet is to render the world -- to see it and report it without loss, without perversion. No poet ever talks about feelings. Only sentimental people do.”


Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. perversus, turned the wrong way.


In literature:

It may be doubted whether any dispute has produced stranger perversions of history.
"The History of England from the Accession of James II." by Thomas Babington Macaulay
But that haughty and perverse nature could be content with nothing but absolute dominion.
"The History of England from the Accession of James II." by Thomas Babington Macaulay
What a perversion of you it is!
"Beauchamp's Career, Complete" by George Meredith
The same claim has been made for Bacon with greater confidence, and it is no less perverse.
"The Idea of Progress" by J. B. Bury
She was by nature perverse, and it was partly her love for Jimmy which pushed her towards the man who killed his son.
"In the Wilderness" by Robert Hichens
There are such things as houses of correction for rebellious children and perverse daughters.
"The Clique of Gold" by Emile Gaboriau
This would be a triumph for the perverse boy, and a weakening of his authority over him.
"The Iron Rule" by T. S. Arthur
He got very little out of the perverse instrument.
"The Landlord at Lion's Head, Complete" by William Dean Howells
BUCKIE, a perverse or refractory person.
"Waverley, Or 'Tis Sixty Years Hence, Complete" by Sir Walter Scott
And I won't have her stay in my house; prating, perverse fool, as she is!
"Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded" by Samuel Richardson

In poetry:

As a vulture rapacious, in falsehood a fox,
Inconstant as waves, and unfeeling as rocks!
As a tiger ferocious, perverse as a hog,
In mischief an ape, and in fawning a dog.
""From the man whom I love, though my heart I disguise,"" by Tobias Smollett
Soberness, sobriety.
It is like the agonised perverseness of a child heavy with
sleep, yet fighting, fighting to keep awake;
Soberness, sobriety, with heavy eyes propped open.
"Grapes" by D H Lawrence
Her feet below her drapery shine
Like roses under clinging sprays,
When, late in summer, lolls the vine;—
Like flag-leaves in long August days,
To moods perverse her body sways.
"Aoede" by Maurice Thompson
The many small fripperies—worthless for use—
Your girls delight in, are but an abuse
Of time, and a sorry perversion of taste,
While the needful and useful are running to waste.
"Temperance Warfare" by Janet Hamilton
Forgive our perverseness, thy fierce anger calm,
Remove our adversity, Lord! and our shame,
Like Nineveh, give us all grace to repent,
And serve thee with pleasure, and perfect assent!
"Another, On The Same Occasion" by Rees Prichard
How vainly he labored to sully with blame
The white bust of Penn, in the niche of his fame!
Self-will is self-wounding, perversity blind
On himself fell the stain for the Quaker designed!
"The Quaker Alumni" by John Greenleaf Whittier

In news:

(AP) _ A man placed in the Boy Scout s' so-called ``perversion files in 1968 went on to sexually assault a 6-year-old in 1992.
File Photo Two Grand Rapids men are among 1,200 listed in the Boy Scouts’ so-called “perversion files†that detail confidential sexual-abuse allegations against volunteers.
But unless they vary wildly from the unofficial times he just posted, I think the Minnesota Vikings are -- in a perverse way -- in the clear.
The right wing's perversion of patriotism .
A rock music spectacle replete with pigs, peeps and religious perversion.
Inside the ' perversion files.
In Boy Scouts' ' perversion files,' vivid details on the child molesters among us.
Scouts track gays in ' perversion files'.
Boy Scouts ' perversion files' made public.
" Perversion files" show locals helped cover up.
Names posted in Boy Scout ' perversion files'.
Scouts ' perversion files' to be public.
Boy Scout ' perversion files' are public records, Oregon Supreme Court rules.
One of the 45 Massachusetts residents listed as part of the newly released Boy Scout " perversion files" is a former Pepperell resident and Level 3 sex offender who is in prison serving time for his fourth child sex-assault conviction.
The right wing's perversion of patriotism.

In science:

K ; M) its homology, called the intersection cohomology of K with coefficients in M, for the loose perversity q .
Rational Homotopy and Intersection Cohomology
In the case n = 0, a perverse local system is called a local system.
Rational Homotopy and Intersection Cohomology
The perverse degree of a global section ω ∈ eF (K ) is defined with a method similar to a construction of Brylinski ().
Rational Homotopy and Intersection Cohomology
The perverse local system, eF , described above, is called the blow-up of F over K .
Rational Homotopy and Intersection Cohomology
To any such eF and any loose perversity q, q (K , eF ) as in Defiwe associate the complex eFq (K ) and its cohomology H ∗ nition 5.3.
Rational Homotopy and Intersection Cohomology