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tarnish

[tahr-nish] /ˈtɑr nɪʃ/
verb (used with object)
1.
to dull the luster of (a metallic surface), especially by oxidation; discolor.
2.
to diminish or destroy the purity of; stain; sully:
The scandal tarnished his reputation.
verb (used without object)
3.
to grow dull or discolored; lose luster.
4.
to become sullied.
noun
5.
a tarnished coating.
6.
tarnished condition; discoloration; alteration of the luster of a metal.
7.
a stain or blemish.
Origin
1590-1600
1590-1600; < Middle French terniss-, long stem of ternir to dull, deaden, derivative of terne dull, wan < Germanic; compare Old High German tarni, cognate with Old Saxon derni, Old English dierne hidden, obscure; see -ish2
Related forms
tarnishable, adjective
antitarnish, adjective
antitarnishing, adjective
nontarnishable, adjective
nontarnished, adjective
nontarnishing, adjective
untarnishable, adjective
untarnished, adjective
untarnishing, adjective
Synonyms
2. taint, blemish, soil.
Antonyms
1. brighten.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for untarnished

untarnished

/ʌnˈtɑːnɪʃt/
adjective
1.
(of silver, etc) not tarnished or discoloured
2.
not tainted or spoiled: untarnished by graffiti

tarnish

/ˈtɑːnɪʃ/
verb
1.
to lose or cause to lose the shine, esp by exposure to air or moisture resulting in surface oxidation; discolour: silver tarnishes quickly
2.
to stain or become stained; taint or spoil: a fraud that tarnished his reputation
noun
3.
a tarnished condition, surface, or film
Derived Forms
tarnishable, adjective
tarnisher, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Old French ternir to make dull, from terne lustreless, of Germanic origin; related to Old High German tarnen to conceal, Old English dierne hidden
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for untarnished

tarnish

v.

1590s, from present participle stem of Middle French ternir "dull the luster or brightness of, make dim" (15c.), probably from Old French terne (adj.) "dull, dark," from a Germanic source cognate with Old High German tarnjan "to conceal, hide," Old English dyrnan "to hide, darken," from Proto-Germanic *darnjaz (see dern). Figurative sense is from 1690s. Related: Tarnished; tarnishing.

n.

1713, from tarnish (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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