be tainted by (something)

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be tainted by (something)

1. To be expose something to or contaminate something with some substance or agent that is infectious, toxic, or otherwise dangerous or unpleasant. Officials have confirmed that the water supply has been tainted by lead. They have been forced to recall nearly 3 million tons of canned tomatoes that may have been tainted by botulin.
2. To be spoiled, ruined, or degraded by the presence or introduction of something terrible, tragic, or deeply unpleasant. Their victory has been tainted by the many lives lost in the battle. It's a shame seeing such an incredible career being tainted by this scandalous behavior.
See also: by, taint
References in classic literature ?
So much of what had happened in that dreadful time as could be kept from the knowledge of Lucie was so well concealed from her, that not until long afterwards, when France and she were far apart, did she know that eleven hundred defenceless prisoners of both sexes and all ages had been killed by the populace; that four days and nights had been darkened by this deed of horror; and that the air around her had been tainted by the slain.
Unison said in an email to its members at the university: "How can we, as a Liverpool university, continue to show support to a person who has been tainted by the web of lies and deceit this that befell the victims of this tragedy?" But Prof Weatherill told staff: "I write to reiterate that I take very seriously the concerns that you have raised; however, there has been no change in relation to Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe and Hillsborough since my last communication to you.
Yavlinsky, one of the country's most prominent liberals, says the public's concept of democracy has been tainted by financial scandals, a decade of war in Chechnya, and terrorist attacks.
The article, which alleged that Night Fighter had been used as a vehicle for money laundering by criminals linked to Spain's Costa del Sol, infuriated Mason, who feels he has been tainted by association.