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sully (v.)

1590s, probably from French souiller "to soil," also figurative, from Old French soillier "make dirty" (see soil (v.)). Related: Sullied (1570s); sullying.

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Definitions of sully from WordNet
1
sully (v.)
place under suspicion or cast doubt upon;
sully someone's reputation
Synonyms: defile / corrupt / taint / cloud
sully (v.)
make dirty or spotty, as by exposure to air; also used metaphorically;
Her reputation was sullied after the affair with a married man
Synonyms: tarnish / stain / maculate / defile
sully (v.)
charge falsely or with malicious intent; attack the good name and reputation of someone;
The article in the paper sullied my reputation
2
Sully (n.)
United States painter (born in England) of portraits and historical scenes (1783-1872);
Synonyms: Thomas Sully
Sully (n.)
French statesman (1560-1641);
Synonyms: Duc de Sully / Maxmilien de Bethune
From wordnet.princeton.edu