verb tra·duce \trə-ˈdüs, -ˈdyüs\

Definition of traduce




  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to expose to shame or blame by means of falsehood and misrepresentation

  3. 2 :  violate, betray traduce a principle of law


play \-mənt\ noun



traduce was our Word of the Day on 01/18/2013. Hear the podcast!

Examples of traduce in a sentence

  1. He was traduced in the press.

  2. a law that traduces one of our most cherished rights: the right to privacy

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.

Origin and Etymology of traduce

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

First Known Use: 1573

Synonym Discussion of 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.

TRADUCE Defined for English Language Learners


verb tra·duce \trə-ˈdüs, -ˈdyüs\

Definition of traduce for English Language Learners

  • : to tell lies about (someone)

Learn More about traduce

Seen and Heard

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a brief usually trivial fact

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