Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An unfavorable or damaging remark; slander: Don't cast aspersions on my honesty.
  • n. The act of defaming or slandering.
  • n. A sprinkling, especially with holy water.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An attack on somebody's reputation or good name, often in the phrase to cast aspersions upon….
  • n. A sprinkling of holy water.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A sprinkling, as with water or dust, in a literal sense.
  • n. The spreading of calumniations reports or charges which tarnish reputation, like the bespattering of a body with foul water; calumny.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A sprinkling, as of or with water.
  • n. The making of calumnious reports, imputations, or charges; a derogatory assertion or criticism; calumny; censure.

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

  • n. an abusive attack on a person's character or good name
  • n. a disparaging remark
  • n. the act of sprinkling water in baptism (rare)

Etymologies

From Latin aspersio ("sprinkling"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • This kind of aspersion on a serious and honorable scholar who scrupulously abstained from imposing his personal views on the conference is no better than political name-calling.

    Multiple Simultaneous Submissions

  • "The South German cannot endure the North German, the Englishman casts every kind of aspersion upon the Scot, the Spaniard despises the Portuguese."

    Matt Cooper: Clinton, Obama and the Narcissism of Small Differences

  • OpEdNews - Quicklink: George Allen and the "aspersion" of Judaism

    OpEdNews - Quicklink: George Allen and the "aspersion" of Judaism

  • VIEW FAVORITES yahooBuzzArticleHeadline = 'George Allen and the "aspersion" of Judaism'; yahooBuzzArticleSummary = 'So why is Allen so upset?

    OpEdNews - Quicklink: George Allen and the "aspersion" of Judaism

  • On the contrary, I made such efforts to welcome the shower of dirty water, that at the end of half an hour I had taken quite a fancy to this novel kind of aspersion, and I resolved to come as often as I could to the happy spot where such treasures were freely bestowed.

    The Story of a Soul

  • I protest in the name of my countrywomen against the aspersion which is cast upon them by those who say that woman is not fit to hold office or discharge public trusts.

    History of Woman Suffrage, Volume II

  • For in no way can their '' aspersion '' be considered baptism.

    orrologion

  • Thought it cast some kind of aspersion on dear Eric's clinical judgement, I suppose. "

    She Closed Her Eyes

  • "aspersion" cast on the city, especially after last year's incident in Elkhart, Ind. Yes, Mr. President, no one with a triple-digit IQ thought you were intentionally denigrating Las Vegas.

    Las Vegas Sun Stories: All Sun Headlines

  • Reading out excerpts from The Girls to my wife, I found that the same aspersion annoyed her much less as a sententia — “When one goes out with a woman, it does not matter whether a thing is good or bad, but only that it should cost a great deal of money” — than as an aside: “We all know how expensive women are.”

    Monster of Marriage

Comments

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  • Strange how a word can simultaneously mean "the act of defaming of slandering" and "a sprinkling with holy water".

    September 7, 2012