"You canker blossom!" 3 Shakespearean Insults


[dih-fam-uh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /dɪˈfæm əˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/
containing defamation; injurious to reputation; slanderous or libelous:
She claimed that the article in the magazine was defamatory.
Origin of defamatory
1585-95; < Medieval Latin diffāmātōrius, equivalent to Latin diffāmā(re) (see defame) + -tōrious -tory1
Related forms
nondefamatory, adjective
undefamatory, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for defamatory
  • The appeals court left it up to a trial court to determine if those statements were defamatory.
  • Irrational and borderline defamatory speech is properly subject to harsh criticism.
  • The public prosecutor is seeking legal advice on whether the book may be defamatory.
  • And if it's incendiary or defamatory or plain sub-human.
  • The courts serve to prevent and punish defamatory statements.
  • Many people are taking steps to protect their online reputations, but combating defamatory remarks is tough.
  • We generally rely on courts to decide if a statement is defamatory according to local law.
  • One may also argue-less persuasively, in my view-against protecting certain forms of public obscenity and defamatory statements.
  • defamatory language is out of place in any professional setting.
  • Gang graffiti, obscenities and defamatory graffiti must be removed or obliterated immediately upon notification.
British Dictionary definitions for defamatory


/dɪˈfæmətərɪ; -trɪ/
injurious to someone's name or reputation
Derived Forms
defamatorily, adverb
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for defamatory

1590s, from Middle French diffamatoire, Medieval Latin diffamatorius "tending to defame," from diffamat-, past participle stem of diffamare (see defame).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for defamatory

Many English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for defamatory

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for defamatory