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a. Shockingly hideous or frightful in appearance.
b. Of or resembling a fabulous monster.
2. Exceptionally large; enormous: a monstrous tidal wave.
3. Extremely immoral or cruel: a monstrous dictator; monstrous behavior.
4. Archaic Deviating greatly from the norm in appearance or structure; abnormal.

[Middle English, from Old French monstruos, from Latin mōnstruōsus, from mōnstrum, portent, monster; see monster.]

mon′strous·ly adv.
mon′strous·ness n.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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The quality of passing all moral bounds:
The American Heritage® Roget's Thesaurus. Copyright © 2013, 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
I explore how my female body, female sexuality and feminine sexual behaviour play into this perceived notion of feminine monstrousness. As a means of investigation, I gather tactile and visual information from my own lived experience of womanhood and the abject behaviours and processes required to make my body function."
But because Bundy's monstrousness hasn't been cinematically established - all we've seen him do is smile at women in the library - there's no sense that the media's infatuation with him was unwarranted or uncouth.
"There's no inner conflict within the character, and Efron plays him with such unwavering conviction that it's monstrous precisely because we see no hint of monstrousness."
As a result of her monstrousness, the protagonist has always been barred from the social network; because of her grotesque form, she is excluded from the realm of the human, shunned and despised by others.
The very winged female at her university's entrance signifies monstrousness (though Tennyson was happy enough to appropriate a winged man as an emblem of aspiration in the Idylls and would have known the winged victory female figure of the Greeks).
Given that he had signed so many death warrants himself, Stalin's monstrousness is hard to grasp.
Hic Mulier criticizes the exact kind of deportment for which Moll is famous: 'You have taken the monstrousness of deformity in apparel, exchanging the modest attire...
Tom More declares a plague on both of their colon conditions, making wry reference to William Butler Yeats's celebrated poem, "The Second Coming" where Yeats prophesied the monstrousness that will be loosed upon any land where the center does not hold, despite the outward signs of health and prosperity:
"It is handsome and lyrical and utterly brutal, unafraid of the monstrousness required of its protagonist and her companions, and willing to produce a plethora of beautiful corpses where it needs to....
Likewise, many mid-century authors similarly refer to Estevanico by his skin colour--Betty Baker calls him "the Dark One"--but they also add an extra dimension to these depictions by portraying his physical monstrousness (Smith 277).
The monstrousness of the APS attack, however, almost defies understanding.