black sheep


Definition of black sheep

: a disfavored or disreputable member of a group

Examples of black sheep in a Sentence

She was the black sheep of the family.
Recent Examples on the Web Did the black sheep kill the patriarch to get his hands on the nutria farm? Brian Tallerico, Vulture, 3 Sep. 2021 On the brand side, Skrewball, it's made for misfits, screwballs, and black sheep. Dave Knox, Forbes, 31 Aug. 2021 In another of the episode’s key coincidences, Wendy is Bear’s little sister, and there’s also a black sheep hybrid at The Preserve who may be Jepperd’s son given how the camera lingers on his face. Oliver Sava, Vulture, 6 June 2021 The same timeline applies to the Netherlands, another European black sheep with a reputation for financial secrecy. Christiaan Hetzner, Fortune, 7 July 2021 Devoted son and brother and black sheep of the family. Michael Hofmann, The New York Review of Books, 27 May 2021 Take the aforementioned sheep sweater, which went viral long before the internet age, its lone black sheep seeming to signal Diana's outsider status in the royal family. Megan C. Hills, CNN, 30 June 2021 The nurse answers his question by not answering it, and surely enough, Jepperd finds a black sheep hybrid in the incubator. Oliver Sava, Vulture, 6 June 2021 There was, however, one omission among all the memorabilia on display: an image of Robert A. Durst, Seymour’s eldest son and the family’s black sheep, who has been dogged by suspicions of murder for nearly four decades. Charles Bagli, Town & Country, 17 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'black sheep.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of black sheep

1657, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for black sheep

Time Traveler

The first known use of black sheep was in 1657

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Dictionary Entries Near black sheep

black shark

black sheep


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Statistics for black sheep

Last Updated

26 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Black sheep.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for black sheep

black sheep


English Language Learners Definition of black sheep

: someone who does not fit in with the rest of a group and is often considered to be a troublemaker or an embarrassment


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