Thursday, October 28, 2004

Today's OED antedating: "smear"

Smear, a scheme to defame (n., sec 3 (c), first use cited 1943): Essay titled "Not All the Leopards," by Heywood Broun, The New Republic, September 20, 1939, p 186, col 2: "For instance, Mr. Stalin might say, 'Morrie Ryskind had a piece in The Nation last week which I found most objectionable. Please see that he gets a smearing at the hands of all the fellow-traveling critics.'"