V2 Vocabulary Building Dictionary



Definition: 1. to sully or damage someone's name or reputation; 2. to soil, smear, or make something dirty

Synonyms: soil, sully, tarnish, defile, slander

Antonyms: clean, cleanse, improve, compliment

Tips: While besmirch refers to the soiling or damaging of either something physical or of a person's reputation, the latter usage often implies that what is said about the person is false.

Usage Examples:

Political candidates are known to stoop to low levels in order to besmirch each other's reputations among voters. (sully, tarnish)

The mechanic's hands were besmirched with oil and grease. (soiled) adjective

The newspaper printed an editorial that besmirched the politician's reputation, but it was later forced to print a retraction when much of what was written proved to be untrue. (sullied, tarnished)

The unhappy client could besmirch the reputation of this company. (sully, tarnish)

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