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Community Comment

Words of the Day— traduce

Good morning, Netizens...

January 18, 2013

Word of the Day

  • traduce
  • audio pronunciation
  • \truh-DOOSS\


: to expose to shame or blame by means of falsehood and misrepresentation
: violate, betray

At the apex of the journalist's career, a jealous rival attempted to traduce her name with false allegations.

"In his introductory remarks, Stuart Proffitt, publishing director of Penguin Press and chairman of the prize committee, praised the BBC as the greatest cultural institution in the history of the world.... Here, at last, was someone prepared publicly to speak up for the BBC when so many others were seeking to traduce and destroy it." — From an article by Jason Cowley in New Statesman, November 19, 2012


"Traduce" is one of a number of English synonyms that you can choose when you need a word that means "to injure by speaking ill of." Choose "traduce" when you want to stress the deep personal humiliation, disgrace, and distress felt by the victim. If someone doesn't actually lie, but makes statements that injure by specific and often subtle misrepresentations, "malign" may be the more precise choice. To make it clear that the speaker is malicious and the statements made are false, "calumniate" is a good option. But if you need to say that certain statements represent an attempt to destroy a reputation by open and direct abuse, "vilify" is the word you want.


Spokesman-Review readers blog about news and issues in Spokane written by Dave Laird.