calumny ˈka-ləm-nē, ˈkal-yəm- noun
1. a false accusation of an offense or a malicious misrepresentation of someone’s words or actions
2. an abusive attack on a person’s character or reputation
The word calumny has appeared in 16 articles on NYTimes.com in the past year, including on Nov. 12 in the Sports of the Times column “Does Calgary Really Want the Winter Olympics? Does Anyone?” by Michael Powell:
I attended the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro and wrote of the corruption and violence that had fallen on the poorest in the beautiful city, and the schools and hospitals starved for funds as the government spent grandly on its Olympic Taj Mahal.
Rio’s mayor at the time, Eduardo Paes, wrote a letter complaining of my calumnies and took offense at talk of corruption. Another year passed, and Brazilian prosecutors found Olympic corruption everywhere. An executive from a big construction firm testified that he had given $5 million in bribes to Paes. The former mayor denies those charges.