Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know

scarlet letter

a scarlet letter “A,” formerly worn by one convicted of adultery.
Origin of scarlet letter
An Americanism dating back to 1840-50

Scarlet Letter, The

a novel (1850) by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for scarlet letter
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It has no true unity, such as that shown, for example, by the scarlet letter.

    Essays on Russian Novelists William Lyon Phelps
  • It was the scarlet letter in another form; the scarlet letter endowed with life!

    The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • It is the glare of the scarlet letter itself, and all that it luridly reveals and weirdly implies, which produced the tale.

    Literary and Social Essays George William Curtis
  • “I have left thee to the scarlet letter,” replied Roger Chillingworth.

    The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • It was not less successful than the "scarlet letter," though it was not so finished a piece of workmanship.

British Dictionary definitions for scarlet letter

scarlet letter

(esp among US Puritans) a scarlet letter A formerly worn by a person convicted of adultery
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
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for scarlet letter

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for scarlet

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for scarlet letter