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bar sinister

Heraldry. (not in technical use) a bend sinister or a baton.
the proof, condition, or stigma of illegitimate birth.
Origin of bar sinister
First recorded in 1815-25 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for bar sinister
Historical Examples
  • You display no coat of arms that no bar sinister may be displayed.

    The Lion's Skin Rafael Sabatini
  • Lilian Boyd is smart and ambitious but there is the bar sinister.

    The Girls at Mount Morris

    Amanda Minnie Douglas
  • Also, she thought she was all-white, and never dreamed of a bar sinister.

    A Son Of The Sun Jack London
  • I do not mean by this that any bar sinister defaced his escutcheon.

    A Few Words About the Devil Charles Bradlaugh
  • That his coat of arms bore the "bar sinister," there was not the least doubt.

    At Start and Finish William Lindsey
  • It was the weight that crushed her almost to lifelessness; it was the bar sinister.

    The Daughter of Anderson Crow

    George Barr McCutcheon
  • At the same moment, verbally, he cast the bar sinister on my genealogy.

    The Road

    Jack London
  • What luck did you have in keeping out others—even Utah, with its bar sinister of the twin relic of barbarism?

    Problems of Expansion Whitelaw Reid
  • The bar sinister was on his shield; his credentials were the advice of an unreal person to fight in common with the whites.

    John Ermine of the Yellowstone Frederic Remington
  • If I had him near at hand, and of my own blood too, though with the bar sinister, is not here the question.

    Barry Lyndon William Makepeace Thackeray
British Dictionary definitions for bar sinister

bar sinister

(not in heraldic usage) another name for bend sinister
the condition, implication, or stigma of being of illegitimate birth
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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