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v. tar·nished, tar·nish·ing, tar·nish·es
v. tr.
1. To dull the luster of; discolor, especially by exposure to air or dirt: Being in the ground for so long tarnished the old coins.
a. To detract from or spoil: a tasteless meal that tarnished an otherwise pleasant evening.
b. To bring disgrace to; sully: a scandal that tarnished his reputation.
v. intr.
1. To lose luster; become discolored: a metal that tarnishes quickly.
2. To become less enjoyable or estimable: Her admiration for the movie's producer quickly tarnished.
1. The condition of being tarnished: no sign of tarnish on the frame.
2. A film or layer of discoloration on a metal surface caused by corrosion or oxidation.
3. The condition of being disgraced or made less estimable: the tarnish on his reputation.

[Middle English ternishen, from Old French ternir, terniss-, to darken, tarnish, from Frankish *tarnjan; see dher- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]

tar′nish·a·ble adj.
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.


1. having lost its shine, esp by exposure to air or moisture, resulting in surface oxidation
2. stained, tainted, or spoilt
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
مُلَوَّث، فاقِد البَريق أو اللمْعَه


[ˈtɑːnɪʃt] ADJ [metal] → deslustrado, sin brillo; [reputation] → manchado, empañado
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005


[ˈtɑːrnɪʃt] adj
[metal] → terni(e)
[image, reputation] → terni(e)
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


(ˈtaːniʃ) verb
to (cause a metal to) become dull and stained. Silver tarnishes easily.
a dull, stained appearance on a metal surface.
ˈtarnished adjective
Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary © 2006-2013 K Dictionaries Ltd.
References in classic literature ?
The last rays of the sun Lit but the tops of trees and mountain-peaks With tarnished glory; and the water's sheen, Once blue and bright, grew lustreless, and soon A welter of red clouds alone betrayed The passing of the sun.
There were non there, and she took from her pocket a yellow set of ivory tablets, mounted in tarnished gold, and wrote upon them with a pencil in a case of tarnished gold that hung from her neck.
He looked round the little cabin, at the painted beams, at the tarnished varnish of bulkheads; he looked round as if appealing to all its shabby strangeness, to the disorderly jumble of unfamiliar things that belong to an inconceivable life of stress, of power, of endeavour, of unbelief--to the strong life of white men, which rolls on irresistible and hard on the edge of outer darkness.
The gold of its heavily-wrought frame was tarnished, and its surface so blurred, that the old woman's figure, whenever she paused before it, looked indistinct and ghost-like.
At the end of a passage leading from the quarter-deck there was a long saloon, its sumptuosity slightly tarnished perhaps, but having a grand air of roominess and comfort.
When I took leave of this island, I carried on board, for relics, the great goat-skin cap I had made, my umbrella, and one of my parrots; also, I forgot not to take the money I formerly mentioned, which had lain by me so long useless that it was grown rusty or tarnished, and could hardly pass for silver till it had been a little rubbed and handled, as also the money I found in the wreck of the Spanish ship.
The tapestry hung down from the walls in many places, and in others was tarnished and faded under the effects of the sun, or tattered and decayed by age.
He knew that he had tarnished himself, filled his mind with corruption and given horror to his fancy; that he had been an evil influence to others, and had experienced a terrible joy in being so; and that of the lives that had crossed his own, it had been the fairest and the most full of promise that he had brought to shame.
There were bits of old brocade on the walls, and the piano was covered with a piece of silk, beautiful and tarnished; in one corner was a copy of the Venus of Milo, and in another of the Venus of the Medici.
The peculiarities of lighting, the masses of dingy red and tarnished gold, the heaviness of the shadows and the decorative lines, offered a new theme; and half the studios in the Quarter contained sketches made in one or other of the local theatres.
Here we have glimpses of him, a sorry figure in rusty black and tarnished gold, his pockets stuffed with papers, now assisting in a chemist's shop, now practicing as a doctor among those as poor as himself, now struggling to get a footing in the realm of literature, now passing his days miserably as an usher in a school.
Snider again held aloft another trophy of the search--a metal spike and some tarnished and corroded metal ornaments.