\ ˈklir How to pronounce clear (audio) \

Definition of clear

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : bright, luminous bonfires clear and bright— Shakespeare
b : cloudless specifically : less than one-tenth covered a clear sky
c : free from mist, haze, or dust a clear day
d : untroubled, serene a clear gaze
2 : clean, pure: such as
a : free from blemishes clear skin
b : easily seen through : transparent clear glass clear plastic bags
c : free from abnormal sounds on auscultation
3a : easily heard a loud and clear sound
b : easily visible : plain a clear signal
c : free from obscurity or ambiguity : easily understood : unmistakable a clear explanation
4a : capable of sharp discernment : keen a clear thinker
b : free from doubt : sure not clear on how to proceed
5 : free from guile or guilt : innocent a clear conscience
6 : unhampered by restriction or limitation: such as
a : free of debts or charges a clear estate
b : net a clear profit
c : unqualified, absolute a clear victory
d : free from obstruction clear passage
e : emptied of contents or cargo A ship is clear after unloading.
f : free from entanglement or contact staying clear of controversy keep clear of the boundary
g : bare, denuded clear ground



Definition of clear (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : in a clear manner to cry loud and clear
2 : all the way drove clear across the state


cleared; clearing; clears

Definition of clear (Entry 3 of 4)

transitive verb

1a : to make clear or translucent clear the water by filtering
b : to free from pollution or cloudiness clear the atmosphere
2 : to free from accusation or blame : exonerate, vindicate the opportunity to clear himself
3a : to give insight to : enlighten clear my mind about the new arrangement
b : to make intelligible : explain clear up the mystery
4a : to free from what obstructs or is unneeded: such as
(1) : open sense 1b clear a path
(2) : to remove unwanted growth or items from clear the land of timber
(3) : to rid or make a rasping noise as if ridding (the throat) of phlegm needed to clear my throat
(4) : to erase stored or displayed data from (a device, such as a computer or calculator)
b : to empty of occupants clear the room
c : disentangle clear a fishing line
d : to remove from an area or place clear the dishes from the table
5a : to submit for approval clear it with me first
b : authorize, approve cleared the article for publication : such as
(1) : to certify as trustworthy clear a person for classified information
(2) : to permit (an aircraft) to proceed usually with a specified action the plane was cleared to land
6a : to free from obligation or encumbrance
b : settle, discharge clear an account
c(1) : to free (a ship or shipment) by payment of duties or harbor fees
(2) : to pass through (customs)
d : to gain without deduction : net clear a profit
e : to put through a clearinghouse clear a check
7a : to go over, under, or by without touching the ball just cleared the uprights
b : to move through successfully : pass the bill cleared the legislature

intransitive verb

1a : to become clear it cleared up quickly after the rain
b : to go away : vanish the symptoms cleared gradually
c : sell Hogs cleared at steady rates.
2a : to obtain permission to discharge cargo
b : to conform to regulations or pay requisite fees prior to leaving port The ship cleared yesterday and is ready to sail.
3 : to pass through a clearinghouse
4 : to go to an authority (as for approval) before becoming effective All tax bills must clear through our committee.
clear the air or less commonly clear the atmosphere
: to remove elements of hostility, tension, confusion, or uncertainty had a long meeting to clear the air
clear the decks
: to make sweeping preparations for action



Definition of clear (Entry 4 of 4)

1 : a clear space or part
2 : a high arcing shot over an opponent's head in badminton
in the clear
1 : in inside measurement corridors three feet in the clear
2 : free from guilt or suspicion The jury's decision was that he was in the clear.
3 : in plaintext : not in code or cipher a message sent in the clear

Other Words from clear


clearness noun


clearable \ ˈklir-​ə-​bəl How to pronounce clear (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for clear

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Verb

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Choose the Right Synonym for clear


clear, transparent, translucent, limpid mean capable of being seen through. clear implies absence of cloudiness, haziness, or muddiness. clear water transparent implies being so clear that objects can be seen distinctly. a transparent sheet of film translucent implies the passage of light but not a clear view of what lies beyond. translucent frosted glass limpid suggests the soft clearness of pure water. her eyes were limpid pools of blue

clear, perspicuous, lucid mean quickly and easily understood. clear implies freedom from obscurity, ambiguity, or undue complexity. clear instructions perspicuous applies to a style that is simple and elegant as well as clear. a perspicuous style lucid suggests a clear logical coherence and evident order of arrangement. a lucid explanation

synonyms see in addition evident

Examples of clear in a Sentence

Adjective There are clear differences between the two candidates. She's the clear favorite to win the election. I'm not completely happy with the plan, but I see no clear alternative. He was the clear winner. She has made it abundantly clear that she does not support us. It's not clear how much longer we'll have to wait. “Changes will have to be made.” “Yes, that's clear.” Her writing has a clear style. The instructions weren't very clear about when we were supposed to begin. I think I have a clear understanding of the problem. Adverb We drove clear across the state. The ball rolled clear across the street. Verb The sky cleared after the rain. The weather is cloudy now, but it's clearing gradually. The morning fog gradually cleared. When the smoke cleared, we could see that the building had been completely destroyed. The water cleared after the mud had settled. My skin cleared when I started using the cream. They cleared timber from the land. She cleared everything out of the closet. I'll clear those books out of the way. The police ordered the crowd to clear the area. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective While the house restoration and garden required considerable work, the benefits are clear. Nicole Sours Larson, San Diego Union-Tribune, 25 Sep. 2022 This much is clear: Mattingly's revelation on Sunday wasn't a retirement announcement. Tim Reynolds, ajc, 25 Sep. 2022 To be clear, the governors who moved the asylum seekers, Florida’s Ron DeSantis, Arizona’s Doug Ducey and Texas’s Greg Abbott, were trying to make a political point, or pulling a political stunt, depending on your point of view. Dante Chinni, NBC News, 25 Sep. 2022 That was clear early against the Utes, who led 14-0 after a quarter and 24-6 at halftime. Kent Somers, The Arizona Republic, 25 Sep. 2022 Precisely how the district will work to improve fresh or filtered air into classrooms was not immediately clear. oregonlive, 24 Sep. 2022 To be clear: Dimorphos doesn't pose any threat to Earth, but the DART mission is the first physical test in space of one of NASA's primary tenets: planetary defense. Loren Grush,, 24 Sep. 2022 Final defensive stats were unavailable after the game, but Panariello’s impact on the game was clear. Jason Frakes, The Courier-Journal, 24 Sep. 2022 While the film eventually established a steady following, that wasn't clear at first. Johnny Loftus,, 24 Sep. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb The conundrum exists because there’s no clear-cut, agreed upon criteria for declaring the pandemic’s end, Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, recently told Fortune. Erin Prater, Fortune, 22 Sep. 2022 That is a simple and clear-cut answer to your first question. Brad Biggs, Chicago Tribune, 21 Sep. 2022 If the technical details seem murky to non-experts, the reputation risk of the bitcoin model is clear-cut, said Larry Newhook, CEO of Alpha Innovations, an asset management firm. Tim Mcdonnell, Quartz, 7 Sep. 2022 Returning to the emphasis about these assertions being unequivocal, suppose an assertion is made by some prominent AI developer that isn’t so clear-cut. Lance Eliot, Forbes, 26 Aug. 2022 The situations for both of those teams seemed less clear-cut than Merrillville’s, however, with competitions continuing as of earlier this week. Michael Osipoff, Chicago Tribune, 11 Aug. 2022 Further details about the movie have not been as clear-cut as Kaling's enthusiasm for Witherspoon's and actor Ryan Phillippe's kids. Anna Lazarus Caplan, Peoplemag, 11 Aug. 2022 Other spots seem more clear-cut: Hall as a net-front man, Bergeron in the bumper, and Pastrnak in the left circle. Matt Porter,, 10 Aug. 2022 Analysts believe Milorad Dodik, the leader of the semiautonomous ethnic Serb republic within the Bosnian federation, is pushing for a more clear-cut breakaway that could unleash new turmoil in the region. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, 31 July 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Ito rushed in with the gaff, helping to clear his way through the crowd. Robert Gauthier, Los Angeles Times, 26 Sep. 2022 Already years behind schedule and billions over budget, the SLS rocket was first hauled out to launch pad 39B on March 17 for a fueling test to clear the way for launch. William Harwood, CBS News, 21 Sep. 2022 Chairman Jerome Powell and other top officials appeared to clear the way for a 0.75-percentage-point increase at the meeting, matching the aggressive rate raises made in June and July. Michael S. Derby, WSJ, 15 Sep. 2022 The islands’ native population, the Chagossians, were expelled by British and U.S. forces in the late 1960s and early 1970s to clear the way for development of the military base. Katie Mcque, Anchorage Daily News, 15 Sep. 2022 The islands’ native population, the Chagossians, were expelled by British and U.S. forces in the late 1960s and early 1970s to clear the way for development of the military base. Katie Mcque, Washington Post, 14 Sep. 2022 A target date of 2025 has been set for that first championship event, which could clear the way for a women’s sled hockey division to be added to the Paralympic Games by 2030. Steve Megargee, ajc, 5 Sep. 2022 In May, Ardoino said Bitfinex was waiting for El Salvador’s Congress to pass a digital securities bill, which would clear the way for Bitfinex to be approved as the technological provider. Leo Schwartz, Fortune, 30 Aug. 2022 The city of New Haven last year backed a lease extension that would clear the way for the expansion, but the Tweed plan still faces significant hurdles. Kenneth R. Gosselin, Hartford Courant, 18 Aug. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun What made his and Marcus’s decision clear was the standard to which UVA’s players are held. Alex Vejar, The Salt Lake Tribune, 27 Oct. 2021 Eagles coach Denise Wolf said adjustments designed to improve clears and get better looks off corners helped keep her team in strong contention, particularly in a back-and-forth first half. Rich Scherr,, 1 Nov. 2019 Although the public health guidelines are clear - steer clear of others - these workers are putting in longer shifts and taking on bigger workloads. Author: Abha Bhattarai, Anchorage Daily News, 13 Apr. 2020 But steer clear of buying this for gamers looking for a traditional Sonic or Mario platformers: This might be a loser for them. Lisa Marie Segarra, Fortune, 5 Dec. 2019 Brady adds that Kennedy, who has committed to play at Virginia Tech, was just as valuable on defending clears thanks to her strong footwork. Brent Kennedy,, 10 June 2019 Off the beaches, Spanish mackerel will turn on as soon as winds drop and water clears, and cobia are also in the area around markers and other structure. Frank Sargeant,, 20 Apr. 2018 Brady adds that Kennedy, who has committed to play at Virginia Tech, was just as valuable on defending clears thanks to her strong footwork. Brent Kennedy,, 10 June 2019 Domagoj Vida had seven clears from the Croatian defense. Rory Smith, New York Times, 12 July 2018 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'clear.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of clear


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a


1674, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for clear

Adjective, Adverb, Verb, and Noun

Middle English clere, from Anglo-French cler, from Latin clarus clear, bright; akin to Latin calare to call — more at low entry 3

Learn More About clear

Time Traveler for clear

Time Traveler

The first known use of clear was in the 13th century

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Dictionary Entries Near clear

clean-up fund



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Statistics for clear

Last Updated

28 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Clear.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Oct. 2022.

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More Definitions for clear


\ ˈklir How to pronounce clear (audio) \
clearer; clearest

Kids Definition of clear

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : easily heard, seen, noticed, or understood a clear definition The differences were clear. She spoke in a clear voice.
2 : free of clouds, haze, or mist a clear day
3 : free from feelings of guilt a clear conscience
4 : easily seen through clear water
5 : free from doubt or confusion : sure Are you clear on what you need to do?
6 : free of blemishes clear skin
7 : not blocked a clear path a clear view
8 : bright sense 1, luminous clear sunlight

Other Words from clear

clearly adverb
clearness noun


cleared; clearing

Kids Definition of clear (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to free of things blocking I cleared my throat.
2 : to make or become free of clouds, haze, or mist The sky cleared.
3 : to get rid of : remove Please clear dishes from the table.
4 : to go over or by without touching The ball I hit cleared the fence.
5 : to go away : disperse The crowd cleared rapidly.
6 : explain sense 1 We tried to clear the matter up.
7 : to free from blame The judge cleared my name.
8 : to approve or be approved by Our plane was cleared to land. Our proposal cleared the committee.
9 : to make as profit We cleared 85 dollars on the sale.



Kids Definition of clear (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : in a way that is easy to hear loud and clear
2 : all the way I could hear you clear across the room.


\ ˈkli(ə)r How to pronounce clear (audio) \

Medical Definition of clear

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a of the skin or complexion : good in texture and color and without blemish or discoloration
b of an animal coat : of uniform shade without spotting
2 : free from abnormal sounds on auscultation


transitive verb

Medical Definition of clear (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to render (a specimen for microscopic examination) transparent by the use of an agent (as an essential oil) that modifies the index of refraction
2 : to rid (the throat) of phlegm or of something that makes the voice indistinct or husky



Legal Definition of clear

1 : unencumbered by outstanding claims or interests a search showed the title was clear
2 : free from doubt or ambiguity

More from Merriam-Webster on clear

Nglish: Translation of clear for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of clear for Arabic Speakers


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