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[lahy-buh-luh s] /ˈlaɪ bə ləs/
containing, constituting, or involving a libel; maliciously defamatory.
Also, especially British, libellous.
Origin of libelous
1610-20; libel + -ous
Related forms
libelously; especially British, libellously, adverb
nonlibelous, adjective
nonlibelously, adverb
unlibellous, adjective
unlibellously, adverb
unlibelous, adjective
unlibelously, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for libelous
Historical Examples
  • Before you started that song, you dreamed things about the Martian Development Corporation that were libelous!

    Star Performer Robert J. Shea
  • No, indeed, slander and libelous talk are not necessary ingredients of gossip.

    Conversation Mary Greer Conklin
  • The alleged oath is scurrilous, wicked and libelous and must be the invention of an impious and venomous mind.

    The Modern Ku Klux Klan Henry Peck Fry
  • Again the country newspapers were filled with libelous paragraphs.

    James Fenimore Cooper Thomas R. Lounsbury
  • We see then, that many statements which would not be slanderous would be libelous.

    Commercial Law Samuel Williston, Richard D. Currier, and Richard W. Hill
  • It is not half so libelous as that of the Commercial which appeared four days before, and which has been given in these pages.

    Southern Horrors Ida B. Wells-Barnett
  • If this vast structure of brawn and muscle and vanity and foolishness seemed to have a libelous tongue, what of it?

  • Who was the libelous wretch who said that the flowers of California had no perfume and the birds there had no song?

    Roughing it De Luxe Irvin S. Cobb
  • Other newspapers have reproduced the libelous stuff, some innocently and some for sordid reasons, but of this more later.

    My Adventures with Your Money George Graham Rice
  • But, it got wind, and was seized as libelous, and brought the unlucky poet into severe affliction.

Word Origin and History for libelous

also libellous, 1610s, from libel (n.) + -ous. Related: Libelously; libelousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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