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stigma

play
noun stig·ma \ˈstig-mə\

Simple Definition of stigma

  • : a set of negative and often unfair beliefs that a society or group of people have about something

  • botany : the top part in the center of a flower which receives the pollen

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of stigma

plural

stigmata

play \stig-ˈmä-tə, ˈstig-mə-tə\ or

stigmas

  1. 1a archaic :  a scar left by a hot iron :  brandb :  a mark of shame or discredit :  stain <bore the stigma of cowardice>c :  an identifying mark or characteristic; specifically :  a specific diagnostic sign of a disease

  2. 2a stigmata plural :  bodily marks or pains resembling the wounds of the crucified Jesus and sometimes accompanying religious ecstasyb :  petechia

  3. 3a :  a small spot, scar, or opening on a plant or animalb :  the usually apical part of the pistil of a flower which receives the pollen grains and on which they germinate — see flower illustration

stigmal

play \ˈstig-məl\ adjective

Examples of stigma in a sentence

  1. There's a social stigma attached to receiving welfare.

  2. <the stigma of slavery remained long after it had been abolished>



Did You Know?

In Greek and Latin, a stigma was a mark or brand, especially one that marked a slave, so a stigma marked a person as inferior. When the plural form stigmata is used, it usually refers to the nail wounds on Christ's hands and feet, wounds which have sometimes reappeared on the hands or feet of later worshippers such as St. Francis. When stigma began to be used in English, it usually meant the kind of mark or stain you can't actually see. So today we hear about the stigma of homelessness, the stigma of overweight, and the stigma of mental illness. People may be so afraid of being stigmatized for losing a job that they'll put on their office clothes and drive out their driveways every weekday morning so that the neighbors won't know.

Origin and Etymology of stigma

Latin stigmat-, stigma mark, brand, from Greek, from stizein to tattoo — more at stick


First Known Use: circa 1593


STIGMA Defined for Kids

stigma

play
noun stig·ma \ˈstig-mə\

Definition of stigma for Students

plural

stigmata

\stig-ˈmä-tə, ˈstig-mə-tə\ or

stigmas

  1. 1 :  a mark of disgrace or dishonor

  2. 2 :  the upper part of the pistil of a flower which receives the pollen grains




Medical Dictionary

stigma

play
noun stig·ma \ˈstig-mə\

Medical Definition of stigma

plural

stigmata

\stig-ˈmät-ə, ˈstig-mət-ə\play play or

stigmas

  1. 1:  an identifying mark or characteristic; specifically :  a specific diagnostic sign of a disease <the stigmata of syphilis>

  2. 2:  petechia

  3. 3:  a small spot, scar, or opening on a plant or animal





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