from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.
- noun The legally indefensible publication or broadcast of words or images that are degrading to a person or injurious to his or her reputation.
- noun An incidence of such publication or broadcast.
- noun The written claims initiating a suit in an admiralty court.
- transitive verb To publish or broadcast a libel about (a person). synonym: malign.
from The Century Dictionary.
- noun In law, a petition for a decree in divorce.
- noun A writing of any kind; a written declaration or certificate.
- noun In admiralty law, Scots law, and English ecclesiastical law, a writing or document instituting a suit and containing the plaintiff's allegations.
- noun A lampoon.
- noun A defamatory writing made public; a malicious and injurious publication, expressed in printing or writing, or by signs or pictures, tending either to injure the memory of one dead or the reputation of one alive, and to expose him to public hatred, contempt, or ridicule.
- noun The crime of publishing a libel: as, he was guilty of libel.
- noun In general, defamation; a defamatory remark or act; malicious misrepresentation in conversation or otherwise; anything intended or which tends to bring a person or thing into disrepute.
- noun Synonyms See
- In admiralty law, Scots law, and English ecclesiastical law, to serve a libel upon; institute suit against; present a formal charge against for trial, as against a clergyman for conduct unbecoming his office, or against a ship or goods for a violation of the laws of trade or revenue. See
libel, n., 2.
- To defame or expose to public hatred or contempt by a malicious and injurious publication, as a writing, picture, or the like; lampoon.
- Synonyms Defame, Calumniate, etc. See
- To spread defamation, written or printed: with against.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.
- transitive verb To defame, or expose to public hatred, contempt, or ridicule, by a writing, picture, sign, etc.; to lampoon.
- transitive verb (Law) To proceed against by filing a libel, particularly against a ship or goods.
- intransitive verb obsolete To spread defamation, written or printed; -- with against.
- noun obsolete A brief writing of any kind, esp. a declaration, bill, certificate, request, supplication, etc.
- noun Any defamatory writing; a lampoon; a satire.
- noun (Law) A malicious publication expressed either in print or in writing, or by pictures, effigies, or other signs, tending to expose another to public hatred, contempt, or ridicule. Such publication is indictable at common law.
- noun (Law) The crime of issuing a malicious defamatory publication.
- noun (Civil Law & Courts of Admiralty) A written declaration or statement by the plaintiff of his cause of action, and of the relief he seeks.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.
- noun A
written(notably as handbill) or pictorial statementwhich unjustlyseeks to damagesomeone's reputation.
- noun uncountable The act or
crimeof displaying such a statement publicly.
- verb transitive To defame someone, especially in a manner that meets the legal definition of libel.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- noun the written statement of a plaintiff explaining the cause of action (the defamation) and any relief he seeks
- noun a false and malicious publication printed for the purpose of defaming a living person
- verb print slanderous statements against
from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
April except (1) Dr. Royce's insistence that my reply to his first libel should _not be published at all without his second libel_, and
A Public Appeal for Redress to the Corporation and Overseers of Harvard University Professor Royce's Libel Francis Ellingwood Abbot 1869
Jill and Gretta are apparently on the job and both using the term libel as if they knew what it meant.
The absence of... Ann Althouse 2007
"A thrush forgets in a year," which I call a libel on one of our most intelligent birds; or cry, with another singer,
A Bird-Lover in the West Olive Thorne Miller 1874
The old man, not knowing to whom to ascribe the (what he termed libel,) vented his malice on me, by asserting that I was the author of it, of which I was perfectly innocent: but he made my master believe it.
As to his defence having been abandoned, we refer your Lordships to the last petition laid by him upon your table, (that libellous petition, which we speak of as a libel upon the House of Commons,) and which has no validity but as it asserts a matter of fact from the petitioner; and there you will find that he has declared explicitly, that, for the accommodation and ease of this business, and for its expedition, he did abandon his defence at a certain period.
The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. 12 (of 12) Edmund Burke 1763
However, it's a legal principle that public figures have a much higher bar to reach in libel and slander suits.
When she spread rumors using her blog defaming Governor Palin she has forgotten something; defamation of character or libel is a CRIME.
U R putting it to Lenn to have him aid you in libel ... as your name suggest do you have him over a barrel?
Most notably, Prof Caplan maintains that the right of an employee to sue for slander or libel is a punishment for "honesty."
Perhaps CAP will push US News to issue a correction … but unless the libel is personal and derogatory then yawn …