smirch

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • v smirch charge falsely or with malicious intent; attack the good name and reputation of someone "The journalists have defamed me!" "The article in the paper sullied my reputation"
    • v smirch smear so as to make dirty or stained
    • n smirch an act that brings discredit to the person who does it "he made a huge blot on his copybook"
    • n smirch a blemish made by dirt "he had a smudge on his cheek"
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Smirch A smutch; a dirty stain.
    • v. t Smirch To smear with something which stains, or makes dirty; to smutch; to begrime; to soil; to sully. "I'll . . . with a kind of umber smirch my face."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • smirch To stain; smear; soil; smutch; besmirch.
    • smirch Figuratively, to degrade; reduce in honor, dignity, fame, repute, or the like: as, to smirch one's own or another's reputation.
    • n smirch A soiling mark or smear; a darkening stain; a smutch.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.t Smirch smirch to besmear, dirty: to degrade in fame, dignity, &c
    • n Smirch a stain
    • ***

Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
From the root of smear,

Usage

In literature:

No slander has ever touched my reputation, and I do not intend that it shall smirch it now.
"In Direst Peril" by David Christie Murray
She was closely guarded, and evidently ran no risk of smirching her good name by associating with a troubadour student.
"Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great, Vol. 13" by Elbert Hubbard
Such games as happen are played but listlessly, and each little face is smirched.
"Nights in London" by Thomas Burke
But its perfect hue was smirched with the lateness of the season.
"The Heart of Unaga" by Ridgwell Cullum
He could do little without smirching that honored name.
"The Art of Disappearing" by John Talbot Smith
Fix it so his change of face will smirch Eva Latimer.
"A Man of Two Countries" by Alice Harriman
Yes, Ollie Chase had her own nobility; the laurel was due her poor, smirched brow, just as much as it was to Joe Newbolt's lofty forehead.
"The Bondboy" by George W. (George Washington) Ogden
His good name will be smirched in no way.
"Seven Keys to Baldpate" by Earl Derr Biggers
This is one of the most beautiful of all the clerical names, only it has become smirched by common use.
"The Church: Her Books and Her Sacraments" by E. E. Holmes
The snow-drifts that had been so white and fair became yellow, and smirched, and muddy, and lost their curves and lines.
"Peggy Owen and Liberty" by Lucy Foster Madison
There was the jealousy that had smirched her sister-love.
"The Plow-Woman" by Eleanor Gates
Nor are these experiences heart soils and smirches.
"The Kempton-Wace Letters" by Jack London
She's too good and sweet and pretty a girl to link her life with a man whose name was smirched.
"Doubloons--and the Girl" by John Maxwell Forbes
The honour of his family and people would be smirched.
"Barclay of the Guides" by Herbert Strang
God save me from the smirch and smirk of it all!
"The Case and Exceptions" by Frederick Trevor Hill
By their light is the smoke seen to be nothing in the world but a sorry smirch.
"London Impressions" by Alice Meynell
She had smirched the great tradition of respectability.
"Carnival" by Compton Mackenzie
She sacrificed her home and moved far enough away so that no smirch could come to me.
"Jap Herron" by Emily Grant Hutchings
He had, said Brantome, "a soul exceeding smirched," and, he adds, "by nature he was exceeding craven.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 5, Slice 8" by Various
Won't you understand that your honour is my honour, that only in so far as we let it get smirched can it be smirched.
"Cinderella Jane" by Marjorie Benton Cooke
***

In poetry:

"My love must come on silken wings,
With bridal lights of diamond rings,
Not foul with kitchen smirch,
With tallow-dip for torch."
"The Maids Of Attitash" by John Greenleaf Whittier
"There's a smirch o' pouther on your breast,
"Below the left lappel?"
"Oh! that is fra' my auld cigar,
"Whenas the stump-end fell."
"The Fall of Jock Gillespie" by Rudyard Kipling
``So bear me witness, dear old Church,
Although apart our ritual be,
I ne'er have breathed one word to smirch
The Creed that bore and suckled me.
"Outside The Village Church" by Alfred Austin
Ah, poor Louise! The sun was high,
It smirch'd her cheek, it dimm'd her eye,
The woodland walk was cool and nigh,
Where birds with chiming streamlets vie
To cheer Louise.
"The Lay of Poor Louise" by Sir Walter Scott
At nine in the morning there passed a church,
At ten there passed me by the sea,
At twelve a town of smoke and smirch,
At two a forest of oak and birch,
And then, on a platform, she:
"Faintheart In A Railway Train" by Thomas Hardy
Too old at fifty! But he feels
There's lots of fighting in him yet.
Some hint of glory lifts, reveals,
In the smirched days he would forget.
They might blot out the shameful past
If he fell fighting at the last.
"Unfit" by Katharine Tynan