a mark against a person for misconduct or deficiency: If you receive four demerits during a term, you will be expelled from school.
the quality of being censurable or punishable; fault; culpability.
Obsolete. merit or desert.

1350–1400; Middle English (< Old French desmerite) < Medieval Latin dēmeritum fault, noun use of neuter past participle of Latin dēmerēre to earn, win the favor of (dē- taken in ML as privative, hence pejorative). See de-, merit

demeritorious [dih-mer-i-tawr-ee-uhs, -tohr-] , adjective
demeritoriously, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
demerit (diːˈmɛrɪt, ˈdiːˌmɛrɪt)
1.  something, esp conduct, that deserves censure
2.  (US), (Canadian) a mark given against a person for failure or misconduct, esp in schools or the armed forces
3.  a fault or disadvantage
[C14 (originally: worth, later specialized to mean: something worthy of blame): from Latin dēmerērī to deserve]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

1399, from O.Fr. desmerite, from des- "not, opposite" + merite "merit." L. demereri meant "to merit, deserve," from de- in its completive sense. But M.L. demeritum meant "fault." Both senses existed in the M.Fr. form of the word. Meaning "penalty point in school" is attested from 1862.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
If you wish to discuss the demerits of copper sulfate, do so.
Each treatment option did have its merits and demerits, however.
The booking merits and demerits of various car-service apps tell only part of
  the story.
But this piece is not really about my views, or about the overall merits or
  demerits of hedge funds.
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