• synonyms


or bad·mouth

[bad-mouth or, sometimes, -mouth]
verb (used with object), bad-mouthed, bad-mouth·ing.
  1. Slang. to speak critically and often disloyally of; disparage: Why do you bad-mouth your family so much?
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Origin of bad-mouth

1935–40; originally a curse, spell (the sense recorded in Gullah); compare Vai (Mande language of Liberia and Sierra Leone) dà nyà mà curse, literally, bad mouth
Related formsbad-mouth·er, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for badmouthing

belittle, criticize, disparage, knock, malign, pan, rap, rip, roast, slam, slander, dis

Examples from the Web for badmouthing

Contemporary Examples of badmouthing

British Dictionary definitions for badmouthing


  1. (tr) slang to speak unfavourably about
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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

Word Origin and History for badmouthing



"abuse someone verbally," 1941, probably ultimately from noun phrase bad mouth (1835), in Black English, "a curse, spell," translating an idiom found in African and West Indian languages. Related: Bad-mouthed; bad-mouthing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper