vicious

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vicious circle

A negative situation that is constantly maintained or worsened, rather than resolved. Underdeveloped countries are often stuck in a vicious circle of poverty that their citizens can never overcome. I use my credit card because I don't make enough money to pay my bills, and as soon as I get paid, any extra money goes toward my credit card bill. That vicious circle is why I'm constantly broke!
See also: circle, vicious

in a vicious circle

In a negative situation that is constantly maintained or worsened, rather than resolved. Underdeveloped countries are often stuck in a vicious circle of poverty that their citizens can never overcome. I use my credit card because I don't make enough money to pay my bills, and as soon as I get paid, any extra money goes toward my credit card bill. I'm in a vicious circle—and constantly broke!
See also: circle, vicious

be in a vicious circle

To be in a negative situation that is constantly maintained or worsened, rather than resolved. Underdeveloped countries are often in a vicious circle of poverty that their citizens can never overcome.
See also: circle, vicious

get into a vicious circle

To beome involved in a negative situation that is constantly maintained or worsened, rather than resolved. I use my credit card because I don't make enough money to pay my bills, and as soon as I get paid, any extra money goes toward my credit card bill. I've gotten into a vicious circle—and I'm constantly broke!
See also: circle, get, vicious

*in a vicious circle

Fig. in a situation in which the solution of one problem leads to a second problem, and the solution of the second problem brings back the first problem, etc. (*Typically: be ~; get [into] ~.) Life is so strange. I seem to be in a vicious circle most of the time. I put lemon in my tea to make it sour, then sugar to make it sweet. I'm in a vicious circle. Don't let your life get into a vicious circle.
See also: circle, vicious

vicious circle

A series of events in which each problem creates another and worsens the original one. For example, The fatter I get, the unhappier I am, so I eat to cheer myself up, which makes me fatter yet-it's a vicious circle . This expression comes from the French cercle vicieux, which in philosophy means "a circular proof"-that is, the proof of one statement depends on a second statement, whose proof in turn depends on the first. One writer suggests that the English meaning of "vicious" helped the expression acquire its more pejorative present sense, used since 1839.
See also: circle, vicious

a vicious circle

COMMON If you describe a difficult situation as a vicious circle, you mean that one problem has caused other problems which, in turn, have made the original problem even worse. The economy couldn't create jobs because consumers weren't spending. Consumers weren't spending because the economy wasn't creating jobs. And this was the vicious circle we were caught in. According to the report, patients discharged from hospitals are being thrust into a vicious circle of poverty and illnesses. Note: This refers to the error in logic of trying to prove the truth of one statement by a second statement, which in turn relies on the first for proof. The expression is a translation of the Latin `circulus vitiosus', meaning `a flawed circular argument'.
See also: circle, vicious

a vicious ˈcircle

a difficult situation or problem where one thing makes another thing happen, which then makes the first thing happen again: He spends too much on drink because he’s worried about his financial problems, and so the situation gets worse and worse. It’s a vicious circle.
See also: circle, vicious

vicious

(ˈvɪʃəs)
mod. great; excellent. Man, this burger is really vicious.

vicious circle

A series of events in which the solution of one difficulty creates another or worsens the original problem. This expression comes from the philosophical discipline of logic, where it means proving one statement by another that itself rests on the first for proof; it is also known as “circular reasoning.” George du Maurier used it in Peter Ibbetson (1892): “The wretcheder one is, the more one smokes; and the more one smokes, the wretcheder one gets—a vicious circle.”
See also: circle, vicious
References in periodicals archive ?
"He viciously beat him all the time and in 2006 he left my son with severe head injuries and he had to undergo an operation," said the 42-year-old woman.
He was a very elderly man who lived alone and had maintained his independence right up until he was viciously attacked in September.
According to McEnroe, despite Borg being one of his greatest rivals, he got along well with him, adding that to play viciously against an opponent does not mean that a player has to dislike him.
In August we reported how the pigs had been so viciously attacked that one was left unconscious.
The families of two young boys who were viciously attacked by two brothers gasped and sobbed as mobile phone footage of part of the horrific attack was played in court.
THE viciously brutal, totally unprovoked assault perpetrated on the person of care nurse Audrey Turnbull was shocking in the extreme.
WITH the credit crunch viciously taking its toll of business opportunities, there has never been a more important time for British companies to get out and sell their products and services.
Summary: The Australian Dollar traveled viciously upward as fears of a resurgence in commodity prices took hold over investor sentiment.
ATTACK victim Kathryn Cook has died seven months after being viciously beaten and left for dead by her ex-boyfriend.
He ran back in and, Liverpool crown court heard, lent over the bar to viciously punch Mr Jeonny once to the cheek.
My dog was viciously attacked by a dog whose owner, after police intervention (twice), did nothing but hurl abuse at me.
A local man viciously beat someone with an iron car jack in a fit of road rage, believing that the man had been following him down the road, a Dubai court heard yesterday.
A MAN in his mid-20s suffered serious leg and facial injuries after he was viciously beaten by a gang of four men in Leamington.
WHAT on earth is the judge taking.To allow an animal to walk free after viciously asaulting Mr Harker a security guard who was only doing his job.
A CHURCHGOER was viciously attacked on the steps of the church.