[ slan-der ]
/ ˈslæn dər /
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defamation; calumny: The accusations are based on hearsay, rumor, or intentional slander, and remain undocumented and unproved.
a malicious, false, and defamatory statement or report: The writer is spewing a despicable slander against an 87-year-old man, and without a shred of proof.
Law. defamation by oral utterance rather than by writing, pictures, etc.: The plaintiff amended his complaint to add a count of slander arising from the statements made at the board meetings.Compare libel (def. 1a).
verb (used with object)
to utter slander against; defame: Both parties tried to concentrate on public policy issues in their campaigns, rather than slandering their political opponents.
verb (used without object)
to utter or circulate slander: They could find no skeletons in my closet, so their only option was to lie and slander.
OTHER WORDS FOR slander
THINGAMABOB OR THINGUMMY: CAN YOU DISTINGUISH BETWEEN THE US AND UK TERMS IN THIS QUIZ?
Do you know the difference between everyday US and UK terminology? Test yourself with this quiz on words that differ across the Atlantic.
Question 1 of 7
In the UK, COTTON CANDY is more commonly known as…
Origin of slander
First recorded in 1250–1300; Middle English noun s(c)laundre, from Anglo-French esclaundre, Old French esclandre, alteration of escandle, from Late Latin scandalum “cause of offense, snare” (see scandal); Middle English verb s(c)laundren “to cause to lapse morally, bring to disgrace, discredit, defame,” from Anglo-French esclaund(e)rer, from Old French esc(l)andrer, esc(l)andir, derivative of esclandre
words often confused with slander
Defamation (and the less common calumny ) are general terms for untrue statements that attack or injure someone’s reputation. Slander and libel, while they are both used generally, are legally more specific: slander is spoken, while libel is written, broadcast, or published. If a statement is true, or is an opinion not stated as a fact, it cannot be considered defamation, and therefore cannot be prosecuted as slander or libel.
OTHER WORDS FROM slander
slan·der·er, nounslan·der·ing·ly, adverbslan·der·ous, adjectiveout·slan·der, verb (used with object)
re·slan·der, verb (used with object)un·slan·dered, adjective
WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH slander1. calumny, defamation, libel, slander (see confusables note at the current entry)2. defame, libel, slander
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use slander in a sentence
As tobacco has numerous slanderers, so there are many who know not how to turn tobacco to a good purpose.
He defied all detractors in the most uncompromising way: they were liars and slanderers, and he only wished he knew their names.Ireland Under the Tudors, Vol. II (of 3)|Richard Bagwell
He hopes his slanderers will be punished, or it will be a precedent to others.The Palace of Pleasure, Volume 1|William Painter
I declare miscreants and slanderers any who shall think or say the contrary.Child Life In Town And Country|Anatole France
The patient Year had lived through the reproaches and misuses of its slanderers, and faithfully performed its work.
British Dictionary definitions for slander
/ (ˈslɑːndə) /
- defamation in some transient form, as by spoken words, gestures, etc
- a slanderous statement, etc
any false or defamatory words spoken about a person; calumny
to utter or circulate slander (about)
Derived forms of slanderslanderer, nounslanderous, adjectiveslanderously, adverbslanderousness, noun
Word Origin for slander
C13: via Anglo-French from Old French escandle, from Late Latin scandalum a cause of offence; see scandal
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