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wash - definition and synonyms


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verb wash pronunciation in British English /wɒʃ/
Word Forms
present tense
present participlewashing
past tensewashed
past participlewashed
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  1. 1
    [transitive] to clean something, usually with soap and water
    I’ve got to wash the car.
    a freshly washed shirt
    1. a.
      [intransitive/transitive] to clean a part of your body, usually with soap and water
      Wash your hands before you touch the food.
      He washed and dressed quickly.
  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.


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.


a course of study which is much shorter than a university course and focuses on the skills you need for a job, especially computer-related skills

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an ancient Roman system of underfloor heating, used to heat houses with hot air; from the Latin 'hypocaustum'

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