- a person guilty of or likely to commit great crimes; evil or wicked person; scoundrel
- a wicked or unprincipled character in a novel, play, etc., specif. the chief such character opposed to the protagonist
- someone or something regarded as the cause of a problem, difficulty, injustice, etc.
- alt. sp. of villein
- Obs. a boor; lout
Origin of villainMiddle English vilein from Old French vilain from Vulgar Latin villanus, a farm servant from Classical Latin villa, a farm: see villa