Origin of blackenMiddle English blaknen ; from blak, black
- to make black; darken
- to hurt or damage by slander, libel, etc.: to blacken a reputation
verbblack·ened, black·en·ing, black·ens
- To make black.
- To sully or defame: a scandal that blackened the mayor's name.
- To coat (fish or meat, for example) with pepper and other spices and then quickly sear in a very hot skillet, thereby producing meat that is black on the outside but tender on the inside.
(third-person singular simple present blackens, present participle blackening, simple past and past participle blackened)