dirty

adjective
\ ˈdər-tē How to pronounce dirty (audio) \
dirtier; dirtiest

Definition of dirty

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : not clean or pure dirty clothes dirty fingernails
b : likely to befoul or defile with a soiling substance (such as mud, dust, or grime) dirty jobs
c : contaminated with infecting organisms dirty wounds
d : containing impurities dirty coal
2a : morally unclean or corrupt: such as
(1) : indecent, vulgar dirty jokes a dirty movie
(2) : dishonorable, base a dirty trick
(3) : unsportsmanlike dirty players
b : acquired by disreputable or illegal means : ill-gotten dirty money
c : disagreeable, distasteful, or objectionable but usually necessary (as in achieving a desired result) hired a thug to do their dirty work
3a : abominable, hateful war is a dirty business
b : highly regrettable a dirty shame
c : likely to cause disgrace or scandal dirty little secrets
4 : foggy, stormy dirty weather
5a of color : not clear and bright : dullish dirty blond
b music : characterized by a husky, rasping, or raw tonal quality dirty trumpet tones
6 : conveying ill-natured resentment gave him a dirty look

dirty

adverb
dirtier; dirtiest

Definition of dirty (Entry 2 of 3)

: in a dirty (see dirty entry 1) manner: such as
a : deceptively, underhandedly fight dirty
b : indecently talk dirty

dirty

verb
dirtied; dirtying

Definition of dirty (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to soil with a substance (such as mud or grime) : to make dirty (see dirty entry 1) dirtied my new shoes
2a : to stain with dishonor : sully tried to dirty his reputation
b : to debase by distorting the real nature of … their religion took most of the rural whites' pleasures away from them, dirtying sex and the human body until it was a nasty thing …— Lillian Smith

Other Words from dirty

Adjective

dirtily \ ˈdər-​tə-​lē How to pronounce dirty (audio) \ adverb
dirtiness \ ˈdər-​tē-​nəs How to pronounce dirty (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for dirty

Adjective

dirty, filthy, foul, nasty, squalid mean conspicuously unclean or impure. dirty emphasizes the presence of dirt more than an emotional reaction to it. a dirty littered street filthy carries a strong suggestion of offensiveness and typically of gradually accumulated dirt that begrimes and besmears. a stained greasy floor, utterly filthy foul implies extreme offensiveness and an accumulation of what is rotten or stinking. a foul-smelling open sewer nasty applies to what is actually foul or is repugnant to one expecting freshness, cleanliness, or sweetness. it's a nasty job to clean up after a sick cat In practice, nasty is often weakened to the point of being no more than a synonym of unpleasant or disagreeable. had a nasty fall his answer gave her a nasty shock squalid adds to the idea of dirtiness and filth that of slovenly neglect. squalid slums All these terms are also applicable to moral uncleanness or baseness or obscenity. dirty then stresses meanness or despicableness don't ask me to do your dirty work , while filthy and foul describe disgusting obscenity or loathsome behavior filthy street language a foul story of lust and greed , and nasty implies a peculiarly offensive unpleasantness. a stand-up comedian known for nasty humor Distinctively, squalid implies sordidness as well as baseness and dirtiness. engaged in a series of squalid affairs

Examples of dirty in a Sentence

Adjective All my socks are dirty. Try not to get your clothes dirty. I can't breathe this dirty city air. The baby has a dirty diaper. I hate listening to his dirty jokes. Adverb Watch out for her. She plays dirty. He usually wins because he fights dirty. Verb Take off your shoes to keep from dirtying the floor. Her fingers were dirtied with ink. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The dirty solution can be rinsed down the drain and the bag disposed of in the trash. Carolyn Forté, Good Housekeeping, 17 May 2022 Antonetti and the rest of the front office, instead of picking up wet towels and dirty uniforms, scrambled to replace a big league coaching staff, Naylor and assemble a taxi squad in case more players tested positive. Paul Hoynes, cleveland, 14 May 2022 Flavors have evolved since the early craze of dirty sodas. Antonia Debianchi, PEOPLE.com, 13 May 2022 Once the hat has soaked, drain the dirty wash water and rinse the hat well with clean water. Jolie Kerr, Better Homes & Gardens, 13 May 2022 Anything less than 10 megabits per second of download gets me dirty looks. Christopher Elliott, Washington Post, 12 May 2022 Gucci put out their own less-than-luxury-looking dirty sneakers in 2019. Elise Brisco, USA TODAY, 12 May 2022 Bands at this stage of their life, playing small, dirty venues, are usually looked after by an eager pal who can’t play an instrument and acts as the driver and equipment humper. Chris Blackwell With Paul Morley, WSJ, 12 May 2022 Clean energy can be a dirty business, especially when extracting the minerals that are vital to building green technologies like electric cars. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, 12 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Carburetors were so crude and gasoline so dirty back in the day, that the small passages inside the carburetor could get blocked up with dirt. Ray Magliozz, San Diego Union-Tribune, 25 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Jones includes a recipe for baked pasta that requires you to dirty exactly one pan — a casserole dish — and a small mixing bowl for the topping. Washington Post, 16 Jan. 2022 Dislikes: Anything that will dirty her pristine white coat. Scottie Andrew, CNN, 25 Nov. 2021 Refinery emissions dirty the air from the harbor area to the Inland Empire, and regulators have taken too long to get serious about curbing them. Laura Blasey, Los Angeles Times, 5 Nov. 2021 Why not dirty them up with the clink of steak knives, Mason jars (holding beer) and some live music at Pappy & Harriet’s in Pioneertown? 21. Los Angeles Times, 3 Nov. 2021 Because oil does not need to be melted and then cooled, or creamed for 5 minutes until fluffy, and is instead added straight-up to the recipe’s wet ingredients, assembly is faster and there is no need to dirty a saucepan or pull out your mixer. Washington Post, 23 June 2021 Another student complained the boy’s skin would dirty up the crayons. BostonGlobe.com, 7 July 2021 Protesters have been seen taking off their shoes before standing on public benches, not wanting to dirty them. Washington Post, 22 Sep. 2020 Democrats say this focus is an effort to dirty up Trump’s 2020 rival. Jerry Dunleavy, Washington Examiner, 10 Aug. 2020 See More

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

First Known Use of dirty

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adverb

circa 1931, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1591, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for dirty

Adjective

see dirt

Adverb

see dirt

Verb

see dirt

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Time Traveler for dirty

Time Traveler

The first known use of dirty was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near dirty

dirt road

dirty

dirty allan

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Statistics for dirty

Last Updated

20 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Dirty.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dirty. Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for dirty

dirty

adjective
\ ˈdər-tē How to pronounce dirty (audio) \
dirtier; dirtiest

Kids Definition of dirty

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : not clean dirty clothes
2 : unfair, mean a dirty trick
3 : not pleasant but usually necessary a dirty job
4 : being vulgar : not decent dirty jokes
5 : showing dislike or anger a dirty look

Other Words from dirty

dirtiness noun

dirty

adverb

Kids Definition of dirty (Entry 2 of 3)

: in an unfair or dishonest way That team plays dirty.

dirty

verb
dirtied; dirtying

Kids Definition of dirty (Entry 3 of 3)

: to make or become unclean

dirty

adjective
\ ˈdərt-ē How to pronounce dirty (audio) \
dirtier; dirtiest

Medical Definition of dirty

: contaminated with infecting organisms dirty wounds

More from Merriam-Webster on dirty

Nglish: Translation of dirty for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dirty for Arabic Speakers

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