- a damaging or derogatory remark or criticism; slander: casting aspersions on a campaign rival.
- the act of slandering; vilification; defamation; calumniation; derogation: Such vehement aspersions cannot be ignored.
- the act of sprinkling, as in baptism.
- Archaic. a shower or spray.
Origin of aspersion
SynonymsSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Related Wordsobloquy, animadversion, hit, knock, defamation, smear, detraction, invective, slander, abuse, rap, libel, put-down, calumny, slam, vituperation, backbiting
Examples from the Web for aspersion
And Tobin, by somehow completely ignoring the definition of the word "aspersion," said this wasn't one.Commentary Mag Defends Bigoted Smears Against Palestinian NFL Player
July 17, 2013
I suspect that Obama, too—for all his personal angst over the Muslim aspersion—will be with squarely with me on this one.Ignorant America
August 30, 2010
She evidently regarded the statement as an aspersion upon myself.Novel Notes
Jerome K. Jerome
But think not that I ever had any idea of casting an aspersion on you.Kosciuszko
Monica Mary Gardner
Carrie felt this to contain, in some way, an aspersion upon her ability.Sister Carrie
Mrs. Ercott smiled, and made no answer to an aspersion she had heard before.The Dark Flower
But of this aspersion he was fully cleared, by the confession of the real father.Biographia Scoticana (Scots Worthies)
- a disparaging or malicious remark; slanderous accusation (esp in the phrase cast aspersions (on))
- the act of defaming
- rare the act of sprinkling, esp of water in baptism
Word Origin and History for aspersion
mid-15c., from Latin aspersionem (nominative aspersio) "a sprinkling," noun of action from past participle stem of aspergere "to sprinkle on," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + spargere "sprinkle, strew" (see sparse). Originally in theology, the shedding of Christ's blood. Modern sense of "bespattering with slander" first attested 1590s. To cast aspersions was in Fielding (1749).