Bad lot – Definition & Meaning

The phrase “bad lot” is a colloquial expression used to describe someone who is considered to be a troublesome or undesirable individual. It is often used to describe someone who has a history of being involved in criminal or immoral activities.


The term “bad lot” refers to someone who is considered to be a negative influence on those around them. They are often seen as being dishonest, untrustworthy, and unreliable. The phrase can also be used to describe someone who is simply unlucky or unfortunate.


The origin of the phrase “bad lot” is uncertain, but it is believed to have originated in the United States in the early 19th century. It is thought to have been derived from the phrase “a bad draw” which was used to describe someone who had been given a bad hand in a card game.

Meaning in different dictionaries

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a “bad lot” is “a person who is dishonest or unpleasant”. The Oxford English Dictionary defines it as “a person or thing regarded as worthless or undesirable”. The Cambridge Dictionary defines it as “a person who is considered to be dishonest or immoral”.


The phrase “bad lot” is often associated with negative connotations. It is used to describe someone who is seen as being a troublemaker or a nuisance. It is also associated with criminal behavior and immoral activities.


Some synonyms for “bad lot” include troublemaker, ne’er-do-well, miscreant, and rogue.


Antonyms for “bad lot” include good person, honest person, and trustworthy person.

The same root words

The root words for “bad lot” are “bad” and “lot”. “Bad” means something that is unpleasant or undesirable, while “lot” refers to a group of people or things.

Example Sentences

  1. “He’s always getting into trouble, he’s a bad lot.”
  2. “I wouldn’t trust him with my money, he’s a bad lot.”
  3. “She’s been involved in some shady business dealings, she’s a bad lot.”
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