Innuendo - Encyclopedia

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INNUENDO (Latin for "by nodding," from innuere, to indicate by nodding), an insinuation, suggestion, in prima facie innocent words, of something defamatory or disparaging of a person. The word appears in legal documents in Medieval Latin, to explain, in parenthesis, that to which a preceding word refers; thus, "he, innuendo, the plaintiff, is a thief." The word is still found in pleadings in actions for libel and slander. The innuendo, in the plaintiff's statement of claim, is an averment that words written or spoken by the defendant, though prima facie not actionable, have, in fact, a defamatory meaning, which is specifically set out (see Libel And Slander).

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