Monday, March 11, 2013

cliché: a bad seed

Meaning: someone or something that is a bad influence or produces bad results (definition).

Example: Always getting into mischief, the youth was the bad seed of a troubled family.

Origins: Biblical references to the effect of sewing seed in fields. (Source.)


  • a flawed seed
  • a wayward seed
  • a seed of no good character
  • a withered planting
  • a pit with no future
  • a fruitless fount
  • an ill-gained grain
  • an unproductive kernel
  • a profitless pip

Discussion: Some definitions prescribe a genetic element as the source of poor production, but the usage I’m familiar with makes no such association, unless it’s simply understood.

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