- 1[transitive] to spread an oily or soft substance over a surface in a rough or careless way synonym daub smear something on/over something The children had smeared mud on the walls. smear something with something The children had smeared the walls with mud. His face was smeared with blood.
- 2[transitive] smear something to make something dirty or greasy His glasses were smeared. smeared windows
- 3[transitive] smear somebody/something to damage somebody’s reputation by saying unpleasant things about them that are not true synonym slander The story was an attempt to smear the party leader. See related entries: Dishonest
- 4[transitive, intransitive] smear (something) to rub writing, a drawing, etc. so that it is no longer clear; to become not clear in this way synonym smudge The last few words of the letter were smeared. Word Origin Old English smierwan (verb), smeoru ‘ointment, grease’, of Germanic origin; related to German schmieren (verb), Schmer (noun).Extra examples His hands were smeared with blood. She smeared the cream liberally on her face. The child had smeared jam all over her face. Their faces were heavily smeared with mud. Her make-up was smeared over her face and her hair was a mess.
BrE BrE//smɪə(r)//; NAmE NAmE//smɪr//Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they smear
BrE BrE//smɪə(r)//; NAmE NAmE//smɪr//he / she / it smears
BrE BrE//smɪəz//; NAmE NAmE//smɪrz//past simple smeared
BrE BrE//smɪəd//; NAmE NAmE//smɪrd//past participle smeared
BrE BrE//smɪəd//; NAmE NAmE//smɪrd//-ing form smearing
BrE BrE//ˈsmɪərɪŋ//; NAmE NAmE//ˈsmɪrɪŋ//Dishonest