Definition of bad-mouth in English:



[WITH OBJECT]informal
  • Criticize (someone) behind their back:

    ‘no one wants to hire an individual who bad-mouths a prior employer’
    • ‘I don't think it's helpful for people to be bad-mouthing the local officials.’
    • ‘Even if he wasn't a colleague, it wasn't very nice to be out bad-mouthing anybody, no matter how much they deserved it.’
    • ‘As if I had enough to fill my plate, now I have to worry about my ex-best friend bad-mouthing me behind my back.’
    • ‘Four years later, I was asleep on the Friday afternoon when my wife came in and told me there was a story on radio about Henry bad-mouthing me with a microphone switched on.’
    • ‘MPs refused to respond to her letters, bad-mouthed her to the speaker, harangued her on the phone and threatened to sue her if she proceeded with her inquiries.’
    • ‘Mr. Branton had been bad-mouthing me for years and had alleged that I had no rights to any Jimi Hendrix recordings.’
    • ‘We were willing to let it go, but they are bad-mouthing him.’
    • ‘I growled under my breath as I listened to my Mom bad-mouthing me.’
    • ‘But after class, he sometimes came up to me in the hallway and started bad-mouthing those students who had challenged him.’
    • ‘But he bad-mouthed me after I left, and then when the Sunday Express started to do well he was going around saying that he taught me everything I know.’
    • ‘There is a big ego at work here, one that takes umbrage at being patronised and is not averse to bad-mouthing anyone he deems incompetent.’
    • ‘He is raving and ranting and bad-mouthing the minister.’
    • ‘I don't believe in bad-mouthing anyone, but he has gone out of his way.’
    • ‘So, if I'm a philistine I'm proud to be one and please let's stop bad-mouthing a people of whom we know not nearly enough.’
    • ‘The point is, I started bad-mouthing people as if its nobody's business, because I thought the victims would never read it anyway.’
    • ‘Bonny's still alive, and you see Harland Braun bad-mouthing her.’
    • ‘He learned that she was bad-mouthing him to his superiors as ‘lacking a moral compass’.’
    • ‘Tell him you're not bad-mouthing him and would appreciate the same respect.’
    • ‘When he did try to hype a fight, bad-mouthing an opponent, he never seemed to have his heart in it.’
    • ‘We don't have to be character assassins, we don't have to issue screeds, we don't have to be bad-mouthing other people, but we do have to use logic and reason and persuasion and show why our positions really make more sense for America.’
    belittle, denigrate, deprecate, depreciate, downgrade, play down, deflate, trivialize, minimize, make light of, treat lightly, undervalue, underrate, underestimate
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