Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles Hi this is tutor Nick P and this is lesson 301. Today we're going to look at the difference between notorious and infamous. Actually this one really is more difficult than usual. Because clearly both words mean famous for something bad and I do even think that there's a lot of even native speakers that you kind of use them interchangeably and don't see much of a difference. But from research I can find some subtle differences where some might be more likely to be used in one situation than another. So that's what I'll cover here. All right. Well first of all, of course, notorious means you know well-known for something bad. Something discreditable you know, something that would bring down your reputation basically. Make your reputation or your image seem worse. Let's continue here. Some dictionaries claim notorious is more likely to use for people in the present time. So if you're still alive right now and you're talking about somebody that's still alive right now, like a notorious a bank robber for example. We'd probably be more likely to say a notorious bank robber than an infamous bank robber. That's , that's you know robbing banks right now in the present time or the recent past. Not too long ago. Okay. Infamous tends to be used more for former times. You know maybe more like a hundred or several hundred years ago or possibly even thousands of years ago. It's a little more likely. So there's some subtle differences where you're more likely to see one than the other. But again since it's so close and so since a lot of native speakers almost think of them as the same. Don't be surprised if you see examples that would go against what they say here. Okay. Let me continue. Though some other experts claim infamous is stronger and that it carries a connotation of evil or wicked. Remember connotation that means those are feelings that's connected to the word. So I think in situations where we're saying somebody's famous for something bad in kind of an evil or wicked way. infamous would be more likely used That's what they're saying. When using infamous , the speaker is often making a moral judgment too. That they're judging how terrible they are. Some dictionaries claim infamous is more literary than notorious. It means that you're more likely to see it written than spoken. That's what literary means. So you'll see it in older articles or written articles. You know, old books or historical documents or whatever than notorious . And let's look at some examples which would you know, reflect the these, these notes or these tips here. She is notorious for being late. All right. Well this is probably present time. This is bad. It's, it hurt somebody's reputation, not particularly evil. So we wouldn't normally say she is infamous for being late. We're a little more likely to say she is notorious for being late. Lawyers are notorious for not being truthful, even though to be honest that's probably part of their job too. But still they got a bad reputation for that and a lot of people often joke about how you can't trust lawyers and lawyers always lie. Okay. And again this is a little more likely to be present time too The Paris Metro is notorious for pickpockets. Yeah. It's got a bad reputation. That it's had a lot of pickpockets over the years on the Metro, on there you known Subway's system. So again, this is more like present time. This is also bad. This is a crime. I don't know if I would put it in the I don't think I'd say the wicked or evil category. But it's still bad. It still hurts somebody's reputation. Let's look at number four. Dracula or Vald the Impaler. Yeah. This is actually some people say this is where I guess Brahm Stroker. Was he the first one that wrote the first Dracula ? Where he kind of got the name from. This, this was actually a real prince who was very , very evil. Vlad the Impaler. I think he used to like to impale his victims I think he crucified them and stabbed them. And they were stories about where maybe he might like drink some of their blood and dip bread in their blood. So yeah. That sounds a bit evil and really pretty terrible. So you might you would you might be a little more likely to use infamous and he was hundreds of years ago too. It was a long time ago. So for several reasons infamous would probably be more likely to be used here. So Dracula or Vlad the Impaler was infamous for the way he tortured his enemies or killed them. mm-hmm And the last one here. Benedict Arnold was an infamous traitor. Yeah. This was during the Revolutionary War. Benedict Arnold was always famous for that. So somebody might be making a moral judgment against him.He betrayed the country. Betrayed you know, the people he was supposed to be with so again and this was also you know hundreds at least about you know , several hundred years ago. So okay. Well anyway, I hope you can see somewhat of a difference like I said it's a little tough because in even in some native people's minds they don't often see a big difference between these two. But these are just some hints where one is more likely to be used than the other. Anyway, I hope you got it. I hope it's clear. Thank you for your time. Bye-bye.