tra·​duce | \ trə-ˈdüs How to pronounce traduce (audio) , -ˈdyüs\
traduced; traducing

Definition of traduce

transitive verb

1 : to expose to shame or blame by means of falsehood and misrepresentation
2 : violate, betray traduce a principle of law

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Other Words from traduce

traducement \ trə-​ˈdüs-​mənt How to pronounce traducement (audio) , -​ˈdyüs-​ \ noun
traducer noun

Choose the Right Synonym for traduce

malign, traduce, asperse, vilify, calumniate, defame, slander mean to injure by speaking ill of. malign suggests specific and often subtle misrepresentation but may not always imply deliberate lying. the most maligned monarch in British history traduce stresses the resulting ignominy and distress to the victim. so traduced the governor that he was driven from office asperse implies continued attack on a reputation often by indirect or insinuated detraction. both candidates aspersed the other's motives vilify implies attempting to destroy a reputation by open and direct abuse. no criminal was more vilified in the press calumniate imputes malice to the speaker and falsity to the assertions. falsely calumniated as a traitor defame stresses the actual loss of or injury to one's good name. sued them for defaming her reputation slander stresses the suffering of the victim. town gossips slandered their good name

Did You Know?

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.

Examples of traduce in a Sentence

He was traduced in the press. a law that traduces one of our most cherished rights: the right to privacy

Recent Examples on the Web

Think of Lucrezia Borgia, traduced by slander and gossip, and of Isabella d’Este, greedy for art. Sarah Dunant, New York Times, "Who Was Vittoria Colonna? Just One of Italy’s Great Poets...," 1 June 2018 The idea of someone who works directly for the Trump White House supervising the bureau traduces its entire purpose. Kimberly Harrington, The New Yorker, "The Dangers of Undoing Dodd-Frank," 24 July 2017 Partly, there’s the tonic shock of encountering again, in person, works that are traduced by reproduction, which muffles their keynotes of material, touch, and scale. Peter Schjeldahl, The New Yorker, "The Joy of Eighties Art," 6 Feb. 2017 Some players’ records reflect abilities enhanced by acts of bad character — surreptitious resorts to disreputable chemistry that traduces sportsmanship. George F. Will, The Mercury News, "Will: Baseball must decide if Cooperstown is a shrine or a museum," 21 Jan. 2017 This remoteness, as much as their frequent conflation with swamps, has served to traduce bogs in the popular imagination. Henry Wismayer, New York Times, "Letter of Recommendation: Bogs," 16 Nov. 2016

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'traduce.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of traduce

1573, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for traduce

Latin traducere to lead across, transfer, degrade, from tra-, trans- trans- + ducere to lead — more at tow entry 1

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The first known use of traduce was in 1573

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English Language Learners Definition of traduce

formal : to tell lies about (someone)

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