verb (used with object), vil·i·fied, vil·i·fy·ing.

  1. to speak ill of; defame; slander.
  2. Obsolete. to make vile.

verb -fies, -fying or -fied (tr)

  1. to revile with abusive or defamatory language; malignhe has been vilified in the tabloid press
  2. rare to make vile; debase; degrade

mid-15c., “to lower in worth or value,” from Late Latin vilificare “to make cheap or base,” from Latin vilis “cheap, base” (see vile) + root of facere “to make” (see factitious). Meaning “to slander, speak evil of” is first recorded 1590s. Related: Vilified, vilifying.

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