libel

Libel is the act of publishing a statement about someone that is not true and that gives a bad impression about the person.

Libel is usually contrasted with slander, which refers to a spoken statement that is not true. Both libel and slander are used in legal contexts. In Middle English, libel referred to a written declaration, from Anglo-French, from Latin libellus, from liber "book."

Definitions of libel
  1. noun
    a false and malicious publication printed for the purpose of defaming a living person
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    type of:
    calumniation, calumny, defamation, hatchet job, obloquy, traducement
    a false accusation of an offense or a malicious misrepresentation of someone's words or actions
  2. noun
    the written statement of a plaintiff explaining the cause of action (the defamation) and any relief he seeks
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    type of:
    complaint
    (civil law) the first pleading of the plaintiff setting out the facts on which the claim for relief is based
  3. verb
    print slanderous statements against
    “The newspaper was accused of libeling him”
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    type of:
    asperse, besmirch, calumniate, defame, denigrate, slander, smear, smirch, sully
    charge falsely or with malicious intent; attack the good name and reputation of someone
Word Family