|Main Entry:||smear campaign|
|Part of Speech:||n|
|Definition:||a strategy to discredit a person, esp. a public figure, through disparaging remarks or false accusations|
|a calculus or concretion found in the stomach or intestines of certain animals, esp. ruminants, formerly reputed to be an effective remedy for poison.|
|a fool or simpleton; ninny.|
An attempt to ruin a reputation by slander or vilification, as in This press agent is well known for starting smear campaigns against her clients' major competitors. This phrase was first recorded in 1938 and uses smear in the sense of "an attempt to discredit" or "slander."