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1. A small mark that makes the appearance of something less attractive.
2. An imperfection that mars or impairs; a flaw.
tr.v. blem·ished, blem·ish·ing, blem·ish·es
1. To cause to have a small mark or marks that diminish attractiveness: skin blemished by an allergy.
2. To mar or impair by a flaw: accusations that blemished his reputation.

[Middle English blemisshen, to damage, mar, from Old French blesmir, blemir, blemiss-, to make pale, of Germanic origin; see bhel- in Indo-European roots.]

blem′ish·er n.
Synonyms: blemish, imperfection, fault, defect, flaw1
These nouns denote loss or absence of perfection. A blemish is something thought to mar the appearance or character of a thing: "Industry in art is a necessity—not a virtue—and any evidence of the same, in the production, is a blemish" (James McNeill Whistler).
Imperfection and fault apply more comprehensively to any deficiency or shortcoming: "A true critic ought to dwell rather upon excellencies than imperfections" (Joseph Addison)."Each of us would point out to the other her most serious faults, and thereby help her to remedy them" (Anna Howard Shaw).
Defect denotes a serious functional or structural shortcoming: "Ill breeding ... is not a single defect, it is the result of many" (Henry Fielding).
A flaw is an imperfection that may be hidden or of apparent insignificance but that often has serious consequences: Experiments revealed a very basic flaw in the theory.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


a person or thing that blemishes
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
References in periodicals archive ?
When we finally bought only the foundation and blemisher, she didn't huff and puff but ran off to get us a free sample of the other products.
From among any number of passages, Beecher himself selects the following, sententious conclusion as illustrative of the Overburian style of charactery: "to be brief with him, he is his own strength's enfeebler, his beauty's blemisher, his wit's blunder, his memory's decayer, and his appetite's abater--a toyish tobacconist" (49).
Resistant varieties are available for many of these diseases--especially powdery mildew of squash family crops and various blemishers of beans.