Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Divided into squares.
  • adjective Marked by light and dark patches; diversified in color.
  • adjective Characterized by shifts in fortune or dishonorable acts.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Marked with squares or checkers, like a checker-board; exhibiting squares of different colors; hence, broken into different colors or into lights and shadows.
  • Figuratively, variegated with different qualities, scenes, or events; crossed with good and bad fortune.
  • Having the wing marked with numerous white spots, larger in size and fewer in number than in the condition termed spangled: used in describing breeds of pigeons.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Marked with alternate squares or checks of different color or material.
  • adjective Diversified or variegated in a marked manner, as in appearance, character, circumstances, etc.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb Simple past tense and past participle of checker.
  • adjective divided into squares, or into light and dark patches.
  • adjective changeable; inconsistent; having variations or uncertainty

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective marked by changeable fortune
  • adjective patterned with alternating squares of color

Etymologies

Sorry, no etymologies found.

Examples

  • You can be sure that the term checkered history will be trotted out for virtually every participant in this story.

    CNN Transcript Sep 17, 2007

  • You can be sure that the term checkered history will be trotted out for virtually every participant in this story.

    CNN Transcript Sep 17, 2007

  • It looks boring, I don't want to turn darker than I already am, and I don't look good in checkered pants.

    Archive 2004-06-01

  • It looks boring, I don't want to turn darker than I already am, and I don't look good in checkered pants.

    sundry

  • The story was that those economies with what one might call a checkered past would be put on the straight and narrow by Germany, which, for reasons of history, had a deep aversion to fiscal irresponsibility and high inflation.

    Though a Debt-Default Would Hurt, Investors May Not Give Up on Greece

  • That fritt is also called a checkered lily for those markings.

    The Sunny Woodland-GBDW* « Fairegarden

  • After an undergraduate career that could charitably be described as checkered -- believe me, that is a charitable description -- I had been in the top ten of the class at the Michigan Law School, and had been looking for a job in a private law firm in Chicago, where I grew up.

    Re: Of Mamet And Chicago. Of Obamas And Elections

  • A 121-year-old white survivor of Custer's Last Stand recalls his checkered life with Cheyenne, Wild Bill Hickok and medicine shows.

    post-gazette.com - News

  • I thought it was interesting that part of Kenseth's comments after the race were apologetic but neither driver discussed in detail their so-called checkered past.

    Yahoo! Sports - Top News

  • "Earp" avoids Hollywood gloss, recalling his checkered past and his work as an enforcer for a prostitution ring.

    LJWorld.com stories: News

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