speak/think ill of somebody

speak ill of (someone or something)

To say malicious, objectionable, or defamatory things about someone or something. I've just always had the philosophy that it does no good to speak ill of anyone, so instead I direct that energy toward finding solutions to problems. Anyone who speaks ill of the government in this country runs the risk of being thrown in prison, or worse. You say we shouldn't speak ill of the dead, but we should never forget the misdeeds of those who were once in power, lest history repeats itself.
See also: ill, of, speak

think ill of (someone or something)

To have malicious, objectionable, or defamatory thoughts about someone or something. I've just always had the philosophy that it does no good to think ill of anyone, so instead I direct that energy toward finding solutions to problems. There are plenty around here who think ill of the government, but very few are willing to air those grievances aloud.
See also: ill, of, think

speak ill of someone

to say something bad about someone. I refuse to speak ill of any of my friends. Max speaks ill of no one and refuses to repeat gossip.
See also: ill, of, speak

speak/think ˈill of somebody

(formal) say or think bad things about somebody: You shouldn’t speak ill of the dead.
See also: ill, of, somebody, speak, think