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wash - definition and synonyms


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verb     wash pronunciation in British English
Word Forms
present tense
present participlewashing
past tensewashed
past participlewashed
  1. 1
    [transitive] to clean something, usually with soap and water

    I’ve got to wash the car.

    1. a.
      [intransitive/transitive] to clean a part of your body, usually with soap and water

      Wash your hands before you touch the food.

  2. 2
    [transitive] if the sea washes an object somewhere, it carries it there
    washed ashore:

    Some very strange things get washed ashore here.

    1. a.
      literary if the sea washes an area of land, it touches it

      The island’s western shore is washed by the warm waters of the Pacific.

  3. 3
    [intransitive] literary if a feeling washes over or through you, you feel it very strongly and unexpectedly

    She felt anxiety wash over her.

  4. From our crowdsourced Open Dictionary
    wash your mouth out (with soap) used to tell off someone who has just said something inappropriate such as cuss words
    Submitted by Caleb Judy from United States on 27/01/2016
Word story
From the Bible story in which the Roman official, Pontius Pilate, washes his hands to show that he does not want to be responsible for Jesus’s death.
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a description of an economic or political situation based on analysis of information at the present time

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an unregulated form of capitalism that features financial deregulation, privatisation and low tax for high earners

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