Asperse As*perse", v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Aspersed}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Aspersing}.] [L. aspersus, p. p. of aspergere to scatter, sprinkle; ad + spargere to strew. See {Sparse}.] 1. To sprinkle, as water or dust, upon anybody or anything, or to besprinkle any one with a liquid or with dust. --Heywood. [1913 Webster]

2. To bespatter with foul reports or false and injurious charges; to tarnish in point of reputation or good name; to slander or calumniate; as, to asperse a poet or his writings; to asperse a man's character. [1913 Webster]

With blackest crimes aspersed. --Cowper. [1913 Webster]

Syn: To slander; defame; detract from; calumniate; vilify.

Usage: To {Asperse}, {Defame}, {Slander}, {Calumniate}. These words have in common the idea of falsely assailing the character of another. To asperse is figuratively to cast upon a character hitherto unsullied the imputation of blemishes or faults which render it offensive or loathsome. To defame is to detract from a man's honor and reputation by charges calculated to load him with infamy. Slander (etymologically the same as scandal) and calumniate, from the Latin, have in common the sense of circulating reports to a man's injury from unworthy or malicious motives. Men asperse their neighbors by malignant insinuations; they defame by advancing charges to blacken or sully their fair fame; they slander or calumniate by spreading injurious reports which are false, or by magnifying slight faults into serious errors or crimes. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • asperse — index brand (stigmatize), complain (criticize), condemn (blame), contemn, defame, denigrate …   Law dictionary

  • asperse — (v.) late 15c., to besprinkle, from L. aspersus, pp. of aspergere (see ASPERSION (Cf. aspersion)). Meaning to bespatter someone s character with rumor and false reports is recorded from 1610s …   Etymology dictionary

  • asperse — vb vilify, *malign, traduce, calumniate, slander, defame, libel Analogous words: disparage, depreciate, derogate, detract, *decry: revile, vituperate (see SCOLD): defile (see CONTAMINATE) Contrasted words: *praise, extol, laud, acclaim, eulogize …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • asperse — [ə spʉrs′] vt. aspersed, aspersing [< L aspersus, pp. of aspergere, to sprinkle on < ad , to + spargere, to sprinkle, strew: see SPARK1] 1. Rare to sprinkle water on, as in baptizing 2. to spread false or damaging charges against; slander …   English World dictionary

  • asperse — as•perse [[t]əˈspɜrs[/t]] v. t. persed, pers•ing 1) to attack with false and damaging charges or insinuations; slander; malign 2) to sprinkle; bespatter • Etymology: 1480–90; < L aspersus, ptp. of aspergere to sprinkle, asperse < a a… …   From formal English to slang

  • asperse — transitive verb (aspersed; aspersing) Etymology: Latin aspersus, past participle of aspergere, from ad + spargere to scatter more at spark Date: 15th century 1. sprinkle; especially to sprinkle with holy water 2. to attack with evil …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • asperse — asperser, n. aspersive, adj. aspersively, adv. /euh sperrs /, v.t., aspersed, aspersing. 1. to attack with false, malicious, and damaging charges or insinuations; slander. 2. to sprinkle; bespatter. [1480 90; < L aspersus besprinkled (ptp. of… …   Universalium

  • asperse — verb a) To sprinkle or scatter (liquid or dust). b) To falsely or maliciously charge another …   Wiktionary

  • asperse — Synonyms and related words: affront, calumniate, christen, defame, denigrate, deride, immerse, insult, libel, mock, offend, scandal, scandalize, slander, slur, sprinkle, taunt, traduce …   Moby Thesaurus

  • asperse — (Roget s Thesaurus II) verb To make defamatory statements about: backbite, calumniate, defame, malign, slander, slur, tear down, traduce, vilify. Law: libel. Idiom: cast aspersions on. See ATTACK, CRIMES, LAW …   English dictionary for students

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