purge

verb
\ ˈpərj How to pronounce purge (audio) \
purged; purging

Definition of purge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to clear of guilt
b : to free from moral or ceremonial defilement
2a : to cause evacuation from purge the bowels
b(1) : to make free of something unwanted purge a manhole of gas purge yourself of fear
(2) : to free (something, such as a boiler) of sediment or relieve (something, such as a steam pipe) of trapped air by bleeding
c(1) : to rid (a nation, a political party, etc.) by a purge
(2) : to get rid of the leaders had been purged

intransitive verb

1 : to become purged
2 : to have or produce frequent evacuations
3 : to cause purgation

purge

noun

Definition of purge (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : something that purges especially : purgative
2a : an act or instance of purging
b : the removal of elements or members regarded as undesirable and especially as treacherous or disloyal

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Other Words from purge

Verb

purger noun

Synonyms for purge

Synonyms: Verb

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Did You Know?

In some cultures, a ritual bath or prayer is performed to purge guilt or evil spirits. The Minoans of ancient Crete may have used human sacrifice as a way of purging the entire community, which is fine for the community but rough on the victims. In many cultures, people periodically purge themselves physically—that is, clean out their digestive tracts—by taking strong laxatives; this used to be a popular springtime ritual, and herbal purgatives were readily available.

Examples of purge in a Sentence

Verb High-ranking officials were purged from the company following the merger. a day on which the faithful are expected to purge themselves of their sins through prayer and fasting
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Thousands of records were purged from the database as a result, but thousands more have been added since — many of them by LAPD officers. Los Angeles Times, "Police reform advocates demand LAPD stop using CalGang database," 5 May 2020 The allegations led the Defense Ministry to purge 11 officers from the intelligence unit, and at least one general resigned. Kejal Vyas, WSJ, "Colombian Intelligence Unit Used U.S. Equipment to Spy on Politicians, Journalists," 4 May 2020 That account itself was purged within a day after it was created. Shawn Yuan, Wired, "Inside the Early Days of China’s Coronavirus Coverup," 1 May 2020 As a safety measure, only epidemic investigators at KCDC can access the location information and once the COVID-19 outbreak is over, the personal information used for the contact tracing will be purged. Michael Ahn, The Conversation, "How South Korea flattened the coronavirus curve with technology," 21 Apr. 2020 During the Nazi era, the Berlin orchestra had been purged of Jewish performers. BostonGlobe.com, "Hellmut Stern, 91; violinist returned to Germany after fleeing," 3 Apr. 2020 Under ideal conditions, the immune system purges the body of pathogens without causing too much collateral damage to healthy human cells. National Geographic, "THE BEST OF NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC DELIVERED TO YOUR INBOX," 25 Mar. 2020 Italian design purged all suggestions of empire, aggression, and wealth — Mussolini’s themes — in favor of a sleek, trim, rational look. Brian T. Allen, National Review, "Radical Italian Art Goes Over the Top, Dazzlingly, in Houston," 29 Feb. 2020 The winner will be in position to cast a deciding vote on a case before the court that seeks to purge more than 200,000 people from Wisconsin’s voter rolls. Astead W. Herndonand Alexander Burns, BostonGlobe.com, "Voting in Wisconsin during a pandemic: lines, masks and plenty of fear," 8 Apr. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun President Trump is continuing his purge of national security officials. Harmeet Kaur, CNN, "5 things to know for February 20: Dem debate, Germany, White House, coronavirus, fertility," 20 Feb. 2020 Carrie, a seventh-year pro, was part of a purge of the Browns’ secondary. cleveland, "Report: Colts sign former Browns cornerback T.J. Carrie to a 1-year deal," 30 Mar. 2020 The removal of the Wuhan and Hubei party chiefs might only be the beginning of the provincial purge. James Griffiths, CNN, "Global novel coronavirus death toll reaches 1,383 as China purges officials in Hubei," 14 Feb. 2020 Completely waterproof, with a purge value to balance air pressure while on flights, the Long/Deep Pelican cases might very well replace all my plastic totes. T. Edward Nickens, Field & Stream, "The Best New Camping Gear of the Year," 7 Apr. 2020 The blood from the sacrifices was also intended as a purge. Samuel L. Boyd, The Conversation, "A virtual Passover may be the first for many, but Judaism has a long history of ritual innovation," 7 Apr. 2020 Despite Áñez’s talk of peace, there was a palpable sense that an ideological purge was under way. Jon Lee Anderson, The New Yorker, "The Fall of Evo Morales," 16 Mar. 2020 Many donors are downsizing; others are on a Marie Kondo-like purge. Nancy Shohet West, BostonGlobe.com, "Welcome Home finds new homes for household donations," 12 Mar. 2020 The shake-up at the top of the intelligence community is the latest in a post-impeachment purge. Anchorage Daily News, "Trump set off by intelligence assertion that Russia favors him," 20 Feb. 2020

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

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First Known Use of purge

Verb

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

Noun

1593, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for purge

Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French purger, from Latin purigare, purgare to purify, purge, from purus pure + -igare (akin to agere to drive, do) — more at act

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Time Traveler for purge

Time Traveler

The first known use of purge was in the 14th century

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Statistics for purge

Last Updated

13 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Purge.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/purge. Accessed 25 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for purge

purge

verb
How to pronounce purge (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of purge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to remove people from an area, country, organization, etc., often in a violent and sudden way
: to cause something to leave the body

purge

noun

English Language Learners Definition of purge (Entry 2 of 2)

: the often violent and sudden removal of people from an area, country, organization, etc.

purge

verb
\ ˈpərj How to pronounce purge (audio) \
purged; purging

Kids Definition of purge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to get rid of Ineffective workers were purged from the company.
2 : to rid of unwanted things or people The heir alone would be able to … purge the school of all who were unworthy to study magic.— J. K. Rowling, Chamber of Secrets

purge

noun

Kids Definition of purge (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of ridding of what is unwanted
2 : the removal of members thought to be treacherous or disloyal a purge of party leaders

purge

verb
\ ˈpərj How to pronounce purge (audio) \
purged; purging

Medical Definition of purge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to cause evacuation from (as the bowels) or of or from the bowels of drugs that purge the bowels purged the patient with a cathartic
2 : to free (itself) of suspended matter usually by sedimentation used of a liquid

intransitive verb

1 : to become purged
2 : to have or produce frequent evacuations
3 : to cause purgation

purge

noun

Medical Definition of purge (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : something that purges especially : purgative
2 : an act or instance of purging

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\ ˈpərj How to pronounce purge (audio) \
purged; purging

Legal Definition of purge

1 : to clear (as oneself or another) of guilt purged himself of contempt
2 : to become no longer guilty of purge the contempt

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More from Merriam-Webster on purge

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for purge

Spanish Central: Translation of purge

Nglish: Translation of purge for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of purge for Arabic Speakers

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