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malign

[muh-lahyn] /məˈlaɪn/
verb (used with object)
1.
to speak harmful untruths about; speak evil of; slander; defame:
to malign an honorable man.
adjective
2.
evil in effect; pernicious; baleful; injurious:
The gloomy house had a malign influence upon her usually good mood.
3.
having or showing an evil disposition; malevolent; malicious.
Origin of malign
1275-1325
1275-1325; Middle English maligne < Middle French < Latin malignus. See mal-, benign
Related forms
maligner, noun
malignly, adverb
unmaligned, adjective
Synonyms
1. libel, calumniate; disparage; revile, abuse, vilify. 2. baneful.
Antonyms
1. praise.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for maligned
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • That maligned lady had performed her duties during the past two years with characteristic ability.

    Jaffery William J. Locke
  • The maligned Mrs. Dott announced that she had a good mind to box his ears.

    Cap'n Dan's Daughter Joseph C. Lincoln
  • They bullied and maligned each other, complained, and accused their comrades at my judgment-seat.

  • You shall be a witness hereafter of how deeply I am maligned.

    The Shame of Motley Raphael Sabatini
  • The most maligned of cities, I called it; and truly I said well.

British Dictionary definitions for maligned

malign

/məˈlaɪn/
adjective
1.
evil in influence, intention, or effect
verb
2.
(transitive) to slander or defame
Derived Forms
maligner, noun
malignly, adverb
Word Origin
C14: via Old French from Latin malīgnus spiteful, from malus evil
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
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Word Origin and History for maligned

malign

adj.

early 14c., from Old French maligne "having an evil nature," from Latin malignus "wicked, bad-natured," from male "badly" (see mal-) + -gnus "born," from gignere "to bear, beget," from PIE root *gn- "to bear" (see genus).

v.

"to slander," mid-15c., from earlier more literal sense of "to plot, to contrive" (early 15c.), from Old French malignier "to plot, deceive, pervert," from Late Latin malignare "to do maliciously," from malignus (see malign (adj.)). Related: Maligned; maligning.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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