Some youths have a gloomy side: correlates of the dark triad personality traits in non-clinical adolescents

P. Muris*, C. Meesters, A. Timmermans

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


This cross-sectional study examined the Dark Triad personality traits and their correlates in non-clinical youths aged 12-18 years (N = 117). Child- and parent-report data were obtained on Machiavellianism, narcissism, and psychopathy as well as on Big Five personality factors and symptoms of aggression and delinquency. Results indicated that especially Machiavellianism and psychopathy were in a theoretically meaningful way related to Big Five factors: that is, both traits were associated with lower levels of agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness/intellect, and higher levels of emotional instability. Further, Machiavellianism and psychopathy also emerged as significant and unique correlates of symptoms of aggression and delinquency, which further underlines the importance of these Dark Triad traits in the pathogenesis of disruptive behavior problems in youths.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)658-665
JournalChild Psychiatry & Human Development
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2013

Cite this