Also found in: Thesaurus, Idioms.
black sheep One who is rejected and scorned as a result of being different from other members of a group; a disreputable character, a bad apple. In a flock of white sheep, a black sheep represents an undesirable deviation from the norm. Some say shepherds dislike the black sheep because of its lesser value; others say because it is an eyesore; still others associate black with badness, evil, and the devil. The label is applied to any person who has flagrantly violated or even slightly deviated from the social norms of a particular group. A black sheep is considered a disgrace and is therefore ostracized from the group. Black sheep have been considered objectionable creatures for at least four centuries:
Till now I thought the proverb did but jest,
Which said a black sheep was a biting beast.
(Thomas Bastard, Chrestoleros, 1598)
foul ball One whose personal philosophy or behavior is unacceptable to the mainstream of society; a nonconformist or eccentric. In baseball, a foul ball is one outside the field of play, which is hit or rolls outside of the designated “fair” area. The transference of this expression to an individual whose principles are outside the realm of established social standards is apparent.
hit list Any list of people in disfavor with someone in power; literally, a list of those scheduled to be murdered, usually by the hit man or hired gun of a crime syndicate. This 20th-century Americanism was originally gangster lingo but is no longer limited to underworld use.
in Dutch In trouble, in disgrace, out of favor, in the doghouse; often in the phrase to get in Dutch. No satisfactory explanation has yet been offered as to why one gets in Dutch as opposed to some other nationality, although this expression may have some connection with the older phrase to talk to [someone] like a Dutch uncle. This American slang term has been in use since at least 1912. See also talk to like a Dutch uncle, REPRIMAND.
in [someone’s] black books Out of favor; in disgrace. Nicholas Amherst, in his Terrae Filius: or The Secret History of the University of Oxford (1721), speaks of the college’s black book, pointing out that no student whose name appeared there could receive a degree.
in the doghouse In disfavor or disgrace. Though most commonly applied to misbehaving husbands, the phrase also refers to general disaffection or rejection:
Several big stars are in studio doghouses because of their political affiliations. (Daily Ardmoreite [Ardmore, Oklahoma], April 19, 1948)
This figurative use is considered American in origin, though in James M. Barrie’s Peter Pan (1904) Mr. Darling literally lived in a doghouse as penance until his children returned from Never Never Land. He was responsible for their departure since he had chained up their nurse-dog, Nana, the night they ran off with Peter Pan.
[one’s] name is mud A discredited or disreputable person; one who is ineffective, not respected, or untrustworthy; one held in low esteem; a pariah. In this expression, mud implies the worst part of something, the dregs, scum. Since many people consider their name (with its attendant reputation and other abstract qualities) their most important possession, they are loath indeed to have it likened to mud.
If tha’ doan’t put ring on finger shortly, my lad, tha’ name will be mud in Mountaindale. (D. Robins, Noble One, 1957)
Past participle: disfavored
|Noun||1.||disfavor - the state of being out of favor; "he is in disfavor with the king"|
rejection - the state of being rejected
wilderness - (politics) a state of disfavor; "he led the Democratic party back from the wilderness"
|2.||disfavor - an inclination to withhold approval from some person or group|
inclination, tendency, disposition - an attitude of mind especially one that favors one alternative over others; "he had an inclination to give up too easily"; "a tendency to be too strict"
doghouse - an idiomatic term for being in disfavor; "in the doghouse"
reprobation - severe disapproval
|Verb||1.||disfavor - put at a disadvantage; hinder, harm; "This rule clearly disadvantages me"|
hamper, handicap, hinder - put at a disadvantage; "The brace I have to wear is hindering my movements"
prejudice - disadvantage by prejudice