[bad-mouth somebody or speak ill of somebody]

Discussion in 'English Only' started by A-friend, Oct 12, 2013.

  1. A-friend

    A-friend Senior Member

    Persian (Farsi)
    I wonder if you help me to know which one of the following choices can be used in the following blank:
    --- People mistakably think that she is a bad woman (prostitute); I’m sure that she is not! I wish people wouldn’t……………………her.
    a) bad-mouth
    b) speak ill of
    [I have written this example myself]
    [I think both “a” and “b” work here but I do not know which one is the best]
  2. Ania R. Senior Member

    Poznań, Poland
    Polish (Poland)
    You're right, both options are correct and I don't really see either of them as being better or worse, it's just a matter of choice depending on the context in which the sentences is used.
  3. chfattouma

    chfattouma Senior Member

    Doha, Qatar
    Tunisian Arabic
    Both are correct. The only difference is that 'bad-mouth' is informal.
  4. ewie

    ewie Senior Member

    English English
    Yes they both work. Bad-mouth is quite slangy; speak ill of is rather formal/archaic. Malign is a more neutral-register term.

    (P.S. You mean mistakenly:))
  5. A-friend

    A-friend Senior Member

    Persian (Farsi)
    Thanks a lot dear Ewie
    As I see in the Longman Dictionary, the verb "malign" means: "to say unpleasant things about someone that are untrue" while being true or untrue was not the matter in my question! Maybe my example did not indicate what I was looking for! I need to know the best choice to indicate saying bad things about somebody; I doubted between "bad-mouth someone" and "speak ill of someone"! Now one another choice has been formed in my mind. The verb "malign someone" :confused:
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2013

Share This Page