Also found in: Thesaurus.


tr.v. as·persed, as·pers·ing, as·pers·es
a. To spread false or damaging accusations or insinuations against (someone).
b. To slander or libel; defame.
2. To sprinkle, especially with holy water.

[Middle English, to besprinkle, from Latin aspergere, aspers- : ad-, ad- + spargere, to strew.]

as·per′sive (-sĭv, -zĭv) adj.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
This is indeed a most aggravating circumstance, which attends depriving men unjustly of their reputation; for a man who is conscious of having an ill character, cannot justly be angry with those who neglect and slight him; but ought rather to despise such as affect his conversation, unless where a perfect intimacy must have convinced them that their friend's character hath been falsely and injuriously aspersed.
Nothing could be more grossly absurd than the reproaches which the Abyssinian ecclesiastics aspersed us and our religion with.
Fyne assured me with some resentment, as though I had aspersed little Fyne's sanity.