from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- transitive v. To spread false or damaging charges or insinuations against. See Synonyms at malign.
- transitive v. To sprinkle, especially with holy water.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- v. To sprinkle or scatter (liquid or dust).
- v. To falsely or maliciously charge another.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- transitive v. To sprinkle, as water or dust, upon anybody or anything, or to besprinkle any one with a liquid or with dust.
- transitive v. To bespatter with foul reports or false and injurious charges; to tarnish in point of reputation or good name; to slander or calumniate
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To besprinkle; scatter over.
- To bespatter with foul reports or false and injurious charges; tarnish in point of reputation or good name; slander; calumniate.
- Synonyms Asperse, Defame, Calumniate, Slander, Malign, Traduce, Libel, Vilify, decry, depreciate, disparage, slur, run down, lampoon, blacken. These words are all descriptive of attempts to injure reputation by false statements. They all apply primarily and chiefly to persons. There is often little or no difference between them. Asperse is, literally, to bespatter, as with mud or dirt; it sometimes implies injury to reputation by indirect insinuation. Defame is, literally, to lower the fame or repute of, to bring toward infamy, to make charges that are more open and weighty than aspersions. Calumniate, slander, and malign represent the most deliberate and deadly assaults upon reputation. The calumniator is most often the inventor of the falsehoods he circulates. The slanderer is less inventive and more secret, his work being generally behind the back of the injured person. The maligner is most mischievous, malicious, or malign in his motives. To traduce is to misrepresent, to show in an odious light. Libel and slander are the words most used in speaking of injury to reputation in its relation to the possible recovery of damages at law. To libel, therefore, often suggests the pecuniary loss by defamation; libel is strictly effected by publication, while slander is strictly by word of mouth. Vilify is, literally, to make one (seem) vile; it suggests a defamation of the coarser and more abusive sort. See decry.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- v. charge falsely or with malicious intent; attack the good name and reputation of someone
Middle English, to besprinkle, from Latin aspergere, aspers- : ad-, ad- + spargere, to strew.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)