: to rid of impurities by or as if by washing
: to expel, imprison, or kill (the members of an ethnic minority) in (an area) : to subject to or remove by ethnic cleansing
- In 1996, tens of thousands of ethnic Tutsis, most of them of Rwandan origin, were murdered or ethnically cleansed in the Masisi region of eastern Zaire.
- —David Rieff
: to engage in or undergo a cleanse to remove toxins from the body
- Some people who cleanse say they experience dramatic physical changes.
- —Karen Hube