Definition of blemish in English:



  • 1A small mark or flaw which spoils the appearance of something.

    ‘the girl's hands were without a blemish’
    • ‘A blemish even gives the appearance of a nail on the extended digit.’
    • ‘There are also some natural diamonds which have undergone treatments to reduce their blemishes, thus enhancing their appearance.’
    • ‘Scratches, marks, dents, stains, blemishes or flaws are worth money to you, because they mean price reductions!’
    • ‘Beauty to them is a body without any blemishes including freckles, age spots, and scars.’
    • ‘‘I know,’ I began, examining what looked like a new blemish appearing on my forehead.’
    • ‘I've already had a patch of cancer removed, and other blemishes have appeared that soon will need attention.’
    • ‘We use lasers to treat blemishes, thread veins, remove tattoos, and carry out skin resurfacing to remove lines.’
    • ‘Women use foundation or concealer to diminish fine lines and hide blemishes, freckles, or other skin markings in order to make facial skin appear young, fresh, and pure.’
    • ‘Its flaws are like blemishes on the surface of a pearl: you wish they weren't there so that you could enjoy a perfect treasure.’
    • ‘Appearance - no blemishes - is something to be suspicious of; nature produces diversity and never dull uniformity.’
    • ‘Trim off tough or discolored bottoms of mushroom stems and any bruised spots or blemishes.’
    • ‘There were no scars or blemishes around it, just a little black mark in the shape of an ankh.’
    • ‘Every blemish, every flaw, every hair is replicated.’
    • ‘‘Sexy’ leaves no room for stretch marks, cellulite, fat, blemishes or imperfection.’
    • ‘Everything is solidly constructed with no marks, blemishes or mistakes, which adds to the high quality of the unit.’
    • ‘Grain and blemishes (scratches, specks and dirt) appear throughout.’
    • ‘It smooths away the appearance of fine lines and blemishes, and can be used on bare skin or over foundation.’
    • ‘Instead it has age marks, blemishes, and even a small spot or two with a brownish patina look.’
    • ‘I can point out where flaws and blemishes have been removed as well as body alterations made.’
    • ‘We've taken out freckles, birthmarks, scars, blemishes, excess fat, and body hair.’
    imperfection, fault, flaw, defect, deformity, discoloration, disfigurement
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    1. 1.1 A moral defect or fault.
      ‘the offences were an uncharacteristic blemish on an otherwise clean record’
      mass noun ‘local government is not without blemish’
      • ‘To start a new picture, one without the many blemishes of an alcoholic and his children, their minds tainted with a streak of hate.’
      • ‘In addition, a government made up of officials who have moral blemishes can hardly establish authority in front of the public for obvious reasons.’
      • ‘This failing, however, is only a minor blemish on a noble endeavor well executed.’
      • ‘Insofar as this is a human foible, a mere unsightly blemish on the doctrine of RC, I give it a lot of slack.’
      • ‘The mental lapse that led to this deficit was the only blemish on Berden's sound professional performance.’
      • ‘I know, this is fiction, but it's still telling that women aren't allowed to have blemishes or human failings.’
      • ‘This at a time when the political press was treating every blemish in Gore's moral complexion as if it were a cancerous tumor.’
      • ‘So those air forces were allowed to continue to do things which it must be said in cold blood were a moral blemish, a moral blot perhaps on the conduct of the Allies.’
      • ‘He might even spot a blemish in your game when you are about 120 not out.’
      • ‘None of the parties is without fault or blemish of one kind or another.’
      • ‘Celtic's easy, 5-1 victory at Parkhead in October was an uncharacteristic blemish on Kilmarnock's recent record in the fixture.’
      • ‘I'm neither a human being nor an animal, I'm just an affront, a disgrace, a blemish that has to be hidden.’
      • ‘He'll heal a few wounds while not taking away the main blemish that rests on him that he's tainted by association with Kohl.’
      • ‘Failure to recognize this in the Caldwell decision was a major blemish that drew subsequent discussions away from the moral basis of the test itself.’
      • ‘So dirt has morphed from moral blemish to commodity, and with it a market has been born.’
      • ‘Certainly envy seeks to spoil it by finding fault and criticising every blemish.’
      • ‘For it is only such a remnant that can transcend any blemishes that taint any one institution and it is only such a remnant that can remain pure because it consists only of purity.’
      • ‘Harris writes well about the South because she knows the region; its ways and its blemishes and its peculiar charms are as familiar as her own reflection.’
      • ‘I have been redeemed with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.’
      • ‘Von Trier's admirers may even sense a powerful streak of autobiography in a central character who sees human nature with all its blemishes and failings and yet continually hopes for the best.’
      defect, fault, failing, flaw, imperfection, frailty, fallibility, foible, vice
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[WITH OBJECT]often as adjective blemished
  • Spoil the appearance or quality of (something)

    ‘my main problem was a blemished skin’
    ‘his reign as world champion has been blemished by controversy’
    • ‘He also refused to be downhearted about his score, even though an early run of birdies was soon blemished.’
    • ‘Ink-blemished fingers ensnared a quill, which in turn was poised over a leather-bound tome.’
    • ‘Rashi deduces from here that just as bringing blemished animals shows a lack of respect, the same principle would apply if the foremost servants in the Bait Hamikdash had a blemish.’
    • ‘Scorch marks blemished the earth around him, evidence of Naraea's earlier attempts at magic.’
    • ‘Huge cracks blemished the skis, the bindings were grotesquely twisted, and the poles bent at right angles.’
    • ‘The latest CD technology attempts to tame the original tinny, shallow sonics that blemished the recording's three previous LP incarnations, but the sound is still only just tolerable.’
    • ‘If you bought the car when your credit was blemished and now it's pristine (or if you had little credit history at all), refinancing can mean a significant drop in rates.’
    • ‘Sri Lanka had a perfect record, but it was blemished a little by reasons beyond their control.’
    • ‘This government's shortcoming in enforcing and administering the law, and in protecting lives and property, has further blemished its credibility.’
    • ‘You have got to the age of 23 with no previous convictions and it is extremely sad that you have blemished your character.’
    • ‘The bloody history written in the territory of Gujarat by them will always be remembered in the history of independent India as a black and blemished history.’
    • ‘I am an atheist in life and I won't choose to have my memory blemished by anyone taking the freedom to meddle with my choices in life, neither with my memory afterlife.’
    • ‘Although occasionally subject to grain, especially in day-for-night sequences, the print is rarely blemished by dirt, scratches, or artifacts.’
    • ‘Zhang Xide, the county party chief, was transferred, his record blemished by violence.’
    • ‘Sensibly, Collina was unmoved and the Aston Villa defender had only served to add a further scar to his already blemished reputation.’
    • ‘Nets brim over with dead fish, blemishing the view of a vast reservoir in China's eastern province of Jiangsu where hundreds of peasants already struggle to eke out a living.’
    • ‘The pale sky of early dawn was blemished by flat, wispy clouds and a pallid moon, low in the horizon that had yet to disappear.’
    • ‘No visible wounds blemished the surface of his skin; except for a profusion of scars, his yellow, slightly brown skin was flawless.’
    • ‘Arach and Hawkke turned their head to the door, listening to the woman's pace dying away in the corridor, and then two trails of scarlet blemished her opaline cheeks, as she understood what that silly wench had believed she had seen.’
    • ‘Bennett's excellent point scoring record was slightly blemished as he shot two wides from scorable positions and Clare began to pile on the pressure with another Markham point.’
    mar, spoil, impair, disfigure, blight, deface, flaw, mark, spot, speckle, blotch, discolour, scar
    sully, tarnish, besmirch, blacken, smirch, stain, blot, taint, soil, befoul, spoil, ruin, dirty, disgrace, mar, damage, defame, calumniate, injure, harm, hurt, undermine, debase, degrade, denigrate, dishonour, stigmatize
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Late Middle English (as a verb): from Old French ble(s)miss-, lengthened stem of ble(s)mir ‘make pale, injure’; probably of Germanic origin.