an indication of failure or censure: His chronic lateness is a black mark against him.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024
How to use black mark in a sentence
The third time I did that he grabbed my wrist and left a great black mark on it.
Powell has since expressed regret for the U.N. speech and called it the greatest black mark of his career.A Veteran Sees Echoes of Iraq and Argues Against Intervention in Syria | Brian Van Reet | September 9, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
Manning could have had a very bad few weeks, ending with an administrative separation and no permanent black mark on his record.Manning Is Guilty and So Is the Army That Sent Him Overseas | Brian Van Reet | August 22, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
“This is a huge black mark on its credit rating, obviously,” he says.Stockton Goes Bust: California City Seeks Bankruptcy Protection | Jamie Reno | June 28, 2012 | THE DAILY BEAST
People hold my films against me like a black mark on my character.Pornstar Aurora Snow on the Sasha Grey School Controversy | Aurora Snow | December 21, 2011 | THE DAILY BEAST
Vinson, sweating and unhappy now, had visions of a black mark on his record, and determined to make his point.The Stars, My Brothers | Edmond Hamilton
But to prevent any chance of discovery, I bought some acid, and burned this black mark under my eye.Grif | B. L. (Benjamin Leopold) Farjeon
And goodness knows, you're no beauty with that black mark across your chin and your slacks all grimy at the knees.Ralestone Luck | Andre Norton
The spot where she said he was, was shown by a large black mark, and he was found exactly in that place.Buchanan's Journal of Man, January 1888 | Various
That night Betty put down a black mark, but not without feeling that the day had ended well in spite of its dark shadows.Betty Leicester | Sarah Orne Jewett
British Dictionary definitions for black mark
an indication of disapproval, failure, etc
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
Other Idioms and Phrases with black mark
An indication of censure or failure, as in If you refuse to work late, won't that be a black mark against you? This phrase alludes to a literal black mark, such as a cross, that was put next to a person's name, indicating that he or she had incurred a rebuke or penalty of some kind. [Mid-1800s]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.