backbite

[bak-bahyt]

verb (used with object), back·bit, back·bit·ten or (Informal) back·bit; back·bit·ing.

to attack the character or reputation of (a person who is not present).

verb (used without object), back·bit, back·bit·ten or (Informal) back·bit; back·bit·ing.

to speak unfavorably or slanderously of a person who is not present.

Nearby words

  1. backband,
  2. backbar,
  3. backbeat,
  4. backbencher,
  5. backbend,
  6. backbiting,
  7. backblocks,
  8. backboard,
  9. backboard splint,
  10. backbone

Origin of backbite

Middle English word dating back to 1125–75; see origin at back1, bite

Related formsback·bit·er, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for backbite


British Dictionary definitions for backbite

backbite

verb -bites, -biting, -bit, -bitten or -bit

to talk spitefully about (an absent person)
Derived Formsbackbiter, noun

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012