bad egg

noun
a person who is bad, dishonest, or unreliable; a good-for-nothing: a bad egg who had served several years in prison.

Origin:
1850–55, Americanism

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Dictionary.com's 21st Century Lexicon
Main Entry:  bad egg
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  a corrupt or evil person, cf. good egg
Main Entry:  bad egg
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  See good egg
Dictionary.com's 21st Century Lexicon
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

bad egg

An individual who turns out to be rotten, as in You can't trust himhe's simply a bad egg. Although egg had been used for various kinds of person (young, good, bad) since Shakespeare's day, this transfer of a seemingly wholesome food that, when opened, turns out to be rotten took place only in the mid-1800s. An early definition appeared in The Atheneum of 1864: "A bad egg ... a fellow who had not proved to be as good as his promise." In contrast, the schoolyard saying Last one in is a rotten egg does not have any special significance other than as a way of urging others to join an activity, jump in the water, or the like. Also see good egg.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
Heading off to college is tough enough without getting paired with a bad egg for a roommate.
People have well rural that now natural with bad egg.
Well one bad egg often ruined that for the whole bunch.
Idioms & Phrases
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