(one's) name is mud(redirected from their name is mud)
(one's) name is mud
Said of one who is regarded unfavorably, often because their reputation has been tarnished. Despite predating Abraham Lincoln's assassination, the phrase is often said to refer to Dr. Samuel Mudd, who was jailed for treating John Wilkes Booth after Booth shot Lincoln. Now that staff knows that I'm the one who proposed the layoffs, my name is mud. His name is mud now that he's been found guilty of embezzling money from the company.
one's name is mud
Fig. one is in trouble or humiliated. If I can't get this contract signed, my name will be mud. His name is mud ever since he broke the crystal vase.
my name is mud
see under name is mud.
name is mud, one's
One is in trouble, disgraced, or discredited, as in If they find out I broke it, my name will be mud, or If his estimate is completely wrong, his name will be mud. A popular theory for this expression's origin derives it from Dr. Samuel Mudd, the physician who was convicted as conspirator after he set the broken ankle of President Lincoln's assassin, John Wilkes Booth. But the expression was first recorded in 1823, when mud was slang for a stupid person or fool, a usage dating from the early 1700s. Later the term mud simply alluded to discredit.
See also: name
someone's name is mudINFORMAL
If you say that someone's name is mud, you mean that they have said or done something which has made them very unpopular with a particular group of people. His name has been mud at the Telegraph since he left to work for a rival newspaper. Note: This expression may refer to Dr Samuel Mudd. John Wilkes Booth, the assassin of Abraham Lincoln, broke his leg while trying to escape and was treated by Dr Mudd. Although Mudd did not know what his patient had done when he was treating him, he was put in prison and he and his family were hated for many years.
someone's name is mudsomeone is in disgrace or unpopular. informal
Mud was a colloquial term for a fool from the early 18th century to the late 19th century.
1998 Times Just because I smoked a few lousy cigarettes every hour for 25 years, my name is mud in the insurance business.
your, his, etc. name is ˈmud(informal, usually humorous) used to say that somebody is not liked or popular because of something they have done: Your name will be mud at home if you don’t write to your family soon. ♢ My name is mud at the moment. It’s all because I forgot to pay the phone bill.
name is mud, one's
One is discredited. This term apparently originated in the British Parliament in the early nineteenth century, when it was used for any member who disgraced himself, through either a singularly bad speech or an overwhelming defeat in an election. (In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries mud was slang for “a fool” or “a stupid fellow.”) Some ascribe the usage to Dr. Samuel Mudd, who helped John Wilkes Booth escape after assassinating President Lincoln. Apart from the different spelling, this derivation is a bit of folklore. Actually, “mud” was defined as a “stupid, twadding fellow” in a slang dictionary of 1823, which also stated “And his name is mud” was pronounced after a silly speech. Even earlier, “mud” was defined as a fool or thick-skulled fellow (in Hell upon Earth, 1703). In time, however, the meaning became milder, simply denoting that someone had made a bad mistake.
See also: name
your name is mud
A dishonored reputation. Folk etymology would have it that “mud” is really “Mudd,” as in Dr. Samuel Mudd, the physician who was imprisoned for conspiring with John Wilkes Booth and then treating Booth's broken leg following Lincoln's assassination. However, the phrase was recorded some twenty years before Lincoln died. In truth, one 19th-century meaning of “mud” was a fool (as in a rustic clodhopper), not a good epithet to have attached to your good name.