adjective, rot·ten·er, rot·ten·est.
- rotten apple,
- rotten borough,
- rotten egg,
- rotten ice,
- rotten to the core
Origin of rotten
Examples from the Web for rottenness
But each and every one of them has personal experience of the rottenness of the system.The Protests in Moscow Will Not Spark a Russian Spring|Owen Matthews|December 14, 2011|DAILY BEAST
The scandalmonger, inhibited from doing the forbidden thing, enjoys himself by a vicarious indulgence in rottenness.The Behavior of Crowds|Everett Dean Martin
The real savage is that monstrous, malignant, abject thing, generated out of the rottenness and ferment of civilisation.
The drizzle that fell upon the corpses softened them, and soon made the plain one broad tract of rottenness.Salammbo|Gustave Flaubert
In those days I couldnt see the hollowness and the rottenness of it all.John Brown|Captain R. W. Campbell
He adds: "Some have tried lime dust, and pits aired with tiles, and in a few days have found a mass of rottenness."
Word Origin for rotten
c.1300, from a Scandinavian source akin to Old Norse rotinn "decayed," past participle of verb related to rotna "to decay," from Proto-Germanic stem *rut- (see rot (v.)). Sense of "corrupt" is from late 14c.; weakened sense of "bad" first recorded 1881. Rotten apple is from a saying traced back to at least 1528: "For one rotten apple lytell and lytell putrifieth an whole heape." The Rotten Row in London and elsewhere probably is from a different word, but of uncertain origin.