Libel, Slander, etc.

Slanderers are a species of creatures, so great a scandal to human nature, as scarce to deserve the name of men. They are, for the generality, a composition of the most detestable vices, price, envy, lying, hatred, uncharitableness, etc… And yet it is a lamentable truth that these wretches swarm in every town, and lurk in every village; and, actuated by these base principles, are ever busied in attacking the characters of mankind; none are too good or too great to escape the level of their envenomed dart; nor does the inefficacy of their malicious intentions in the least deter them from persevering in their villainy.

Wellins Calcott

Your tittle-tattlers, and those who listen to slander, by my good will should all be hanged — the former by their tongues, the latter by the ears.


An hypocrite with his mouth destroyeth his neighbour: but through knowledge shall the just be delivered.

Proverbs 11:9

Slander is worse than cannibalism.

John Chrysostom

Just because something isn’t a lie does not mean that it isn’t deceptive. A liar knows that he is a liar, but one who speaks mere portions of truth in order to deceive is a craftsman of destruction.

Criss Jami

You can’t just slander someone, defame them, lie about them. You can’t incite people to crime. There’s all sorts of reasonable restrictions on free speech that are already codified in the British common-law system.

Jordan Peterson

2 thoughts on “Libel, Slander, etc.”

  1. Just remember that the “publishing industry” got its name via the Company of Stationers… and the intersection between the new-in-the-fifteenth-and-sixteenth-centuries concept of “libel” and the slander/libel definition of “to publish.” That is, the entire industry is named after its function in defamation cases: Publishing (making) comments to third parties.

    • I’m not surprised! By the origin, I mean. I once had a case where a woman said her ex-husband had been convicted of “uttering and publishing.”

      Naturally, I had to delve into that little rabbit hole to find out what sort of crime the ex had committed. Turns out in Michigan, uttering and publishing usually to do with writing fraudulent checks. But it could also involve forging documents, like the fake “last and will testaments” made by Nancy Drew villains.

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