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smirch

[smurch] /smɜrtʃ/
verb (used with object)
1.
to discolor or soil; spot or smudge with or as with soot, dust, dirt, etc.
2.
to sully or tarnish (a person, reputation, character, etc.); disgrace; discredit.
noun
3.
a dirty mark or smear, as of soot, dust, dirt, etc.
4.
a stain or blot, as on reputation.
Origin
1485-1495
1485-95; origin uncertain
Related forms
smirchless, adjective
unsmirched, adjective
Synonyms
1. smear, smut, dirty. 2. taint, blot. 3. smudge, smut, smutch. 4. taint.
Antonyms
1. clean.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for smirchless

smirch

/smɜːtʃ/
verb (transitive)
1.
to dirty; soil
noun
2.
the act of smirching or state of being smirched
3.
a smear or stain
Derived Forms
smircher, noun
Word Origin
C15 smorchen, of unknown origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for smirchless

smirch

v.

late 15c., "to discolor, to make dirty," of uncertain origin, perhaps from Old French esmorcher "to torture," perhaps also "befoul, stain," from es- "out" (see ex-) + morcher "to bite," from Latin morsus, past participle of mordere "to bite" (see mordant). Sense perhaps influenced by smear. Sense of "dishonor, disgrace, discredit" first attested 1820.

n.

1680s, "a soiling mark or smear," from smirch (v.). Figurative use by 1862.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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