Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “malign”

malign

adjective uk   /məˈlaɪn/ formal us  
causing or intending to cause harm or evil: Foreign domination had a malign influence on local politics. She describes pornography as "a malign industry".
Synonym
Unkind, cruel and unfeelingViolent or aggressiveTreating people or animals badlyInsults and abuse
malignity
noun [U] uk   /məˈlɪɡ.nə.ti/ us    /-t̬i/

malign

verb [T often passive] uk   /məˈlaɪn/ us  
to say false and unpleasant things about someone, or to criticize someone unfairly: She has recently been maligned in the gossip columns of several newspapers. Much-maligned for their derivative style, the band are nevertheless enduringly popular.Damaging reputationDisapproving and criticizingDisapproving and criticizingDamaging reputation
(Definition of malign from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of malign?
Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Disapproving & criticizing, but you might be interested in these topics from the Expressing opposition & disapproval topic area:

Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “malign” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

microbrewery

a small company that makes beer, usually using traditional methods, and often has a restaurant where its beer is served

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More