smear

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smear / smi(ə)r/ • v. [tr.] coat or mark (something) messily or carelessly with a greasy or sticky substance: his face was smeared with dirt. ∎  [tr.] spread (a greasy, oily, or sticky substance) over something: Barbara smeared peanut butter on a slice of bread. ∎ fig. damage the reputation of (someone) by false accusations; slander: someone was trying to smear her by faking letters. ∎  messily blur the outline of (something such as writing or paint); smudge: her lipstick was smeared. • n. 1. a mark or streak of a greasy or sticky substance: there was an oil smear on his jacket. ∎ fig. a false accusation intended to damage someone's reputation: the media were indulging in unwarranted smears. ∎  a sample of material spread thinly on a microscope slide for examination, typically for medical diagnosis: the smears were stained for cryptosporidium. 2. Climbing an insecure foothold. DERIVATIVES: smear·y adj. smear·er n.

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smear †anoint; cover thickly (as) with some greasy matter. OE. smierwan, corr. to MLG. smeren, OHG. smirwen (G. schmieren), ON. smyrva, smyrja :- Gmc. *smerwjan.
So sb. †fat, grease, ointment OE.; in later senses f. the vb. OE. smeoru.

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Smear

of curriers: a company of men skilled in dressing and colouring tanned leather, 1476.

Examples : smear of curriers, 1486; of gynaecologistsMensa.

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smear (smeer) n. a specimen of tissue or other material taken from part of the body and smeared on a microscope slide for examination. See cervical (smear).