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A visible symbol of something you have done wrong and regretted, or a stigma of a past mistake you made that follows you.
The Puritans required adulterers to wear a scarlet letter, the letter "A" (with a scarlet red color) on a necklace as a penance for their wrongdoing.
by jakk765 November 14, 2013
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Oct 3 Word of the Day
I couldn’t care less (but one must keep up appearances, right?)
Frenemy has a family tragedy. "Thoughts and prayers."
by November 05, 2018
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2
Cause you were Romeo, I was a scarlet letter,
And my daddy said stay away from Juliet.
- Taylor Swift, Love Story
by x1n December 19, 2010
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3
a forbidden woman; someone with a shady past who is ostracized from the community.

From the book by Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter.
"Stay away from Juliet, she's a scarlet letter."
by katerdidit December 02, 2008
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4
the most gayest book you will ever read.
Shaniqua: Have you read the Scarlet Letter?
Shanaynay: Yes, it is the reason I cut my wrists.
by alina is freaking amazing September 30, 2007
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5
stigma related to the infamous incidents
For example, if you were caught to have a sex deal with a prostitute in China, your passport may be stamped with a seal of "lewd worm". This infamous seal is the "scarlet letter"
He bears the scarlet letter for his frivolous indiscretion in the past
by vanderpol August 01, 2010
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*The stigma of a close family member's mistakes and sins, that seems to follow a person, along with the guilt of what that family member has done to others- And the over-all guilt that comes with having been related to that person.* <-(referring to the use of the term, "wearing a scarlet letter," when the family members of serial killers/ murderers feel so overwhelmed by what their family member has done, they carry the guilt of these crimes on themselves and the stigma of being related to that person. i.e. in the case of the infamous, "happy face killer," the daughter of the serial killer referred to it as, "still wearing a scarlet letter."
In the case of the infamous, "happy face killer." The Daughter of the killer (while being interviewed on t.v) had said something like:
"Yes, I do feel I am still wearing (the) a scarlet letter, because of the horrible things my Father has done to people."
by Akasha A. Wolf November 14, 2015
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