He bad mouthing me.

He says me.

When people say bad things to you, can we say the sentences above? I searched the meaning of bad-mouth, it means "criticize (someone) behind their back. If someone is criticizing in front of you. Can we use it?

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    He is bad-mouthing me. Your version, without is, is strictly dialectal. Commented May 15, 2014 at 11:55

2 Answers 2


As StoneyB stated, it's actually He's bad-mouthing me. or if you don't use is, it could be He bad-mouthed me

Note that it's a slang verb and used with object. Also, there does exist a single word for it.

badmouthing - to speak critically and often disloyally of; disparage.

And yes, it can be used in front of a person. Make sure that you are not confused it with back biting.

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    Correct - but you don't address OP's question, which is whether this phrase can be used when one is disparaged to one's face rather than behind one's back. Commented May 15, 2014 at 13:46

"He says me" isn't proper English, in any form of dialect that I'm familiar with. "He bad-mouthing me", leaving out the word "is", is a fairly common usage in African-American dialect. Also, bad-mouthing can be done to someone's face or behind his back.

To give you a bit of context, you can find a broader example of the dialect in the Beatles song Come Together:

Here come old flat top
He come groovin up slowly
He got juju eyeball
He one holy roller
He got hair down to his knees
Got to be a joker
He just do what he please

There are three characteristics that are non-standard here. First, the dropping of the third person singular inflection: "Here come(s) old flat top", "He just do(es) what he please". Next, the use of "he got" to mean "he has" or "he has got". Third, the dropping of "is" when saying something that someone is: "He (is) one holy roller". This is similar to your "he bad-mouthing me" example, although the word "is" serves a bit of a different purpose here.

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