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be·dev·il / biˈdevəl/ • v. (-dev·iled , -dev·il·ing ; also chiefly Brit. -dev·illed, -dev·il·ling) [tr.] (of something bad) cause great and continual trouble to: inconsistencies that bedevil modern English spelling. ∎  (of a person) torment or harass: he bedeviled them with petty practical jokes. DERIVATIVES: be·dev·il·ment n.

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bedevil •Ethel • lethal • brothel • betrothal •Cavell, cavil, gavel, gravel, ravel, travel •Havel, larval, marvel, Marvell, rondavel •bedevil, bevel, devil, dishevel, kevel, level, revel, split-level •daredevil • she-devil • eye level •naval, navel •coeval, evil, Khedival, medieval, primeval, retrieval, shrieval, upheaval •civil, drivel, shrivel, snivel, swivel •carnival • Percival • perspectival •festival • aestival (US estival) •adjectival, arrival, deprival, genitival, imperatival, infinitival, outrival, relatival, revival, rival, substantival, survival •archival •grovel, hovel, novel •oval •approval, removal •Lovell, shovel •interval • serval • narwhal •coequal, equal, prequel, sequel •bilingual, lingual, monolingual, multilingual •rorqual • Hywel •Daniel, spaniel

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bedevil treat diabolically; play the devil with. XVIII. f. BE- + DEVIL.

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