un·​clean | \ ˌən-ˈklēn How to pronounce unclean (audio) \

Definition of unclean

2 : morally or spiritually impure
3 : infected with a harmful supernatural contagion also : prohibited by ritual law for use or contact
4 : lacking in clarity and precision of conception or execution

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Other Words from unclean

uncleanness \ ˌən-​ˈklēn-​nəs How to pronounce uncleanness (audio) \ noun

Examples of unclean in a Sentence

Many of their health problems were caused by unclean living conditions. there's something unclean about this whole business
Recent Examples on the Web This can influence risk if a student were to touch their face with unclean hands at any point during the school day. Zee Krstic, Good Housekeeping, "Is It Safe for Kids to Go Back to School? Here's Everything Parents Need to Know," 22 July 2020 Then go to the sink, lather up and kill germs on our hands, before proceeding to tap away at unclean screens on our wrist. Dalvin Brown, USA TODAY, "Can coronavirus survive on your Apple Watch or Fitbit? Yes, experts say," 19 Mar. 2020 Doctors often refuse to treat the sweepers, who are seen as unclean and untouchable. New York Times, "Sewer Cleaners Wanted in Pakistan: Only Christians Need Apply.," 4 May 2020 Samaritan’s Purse is unclean, and on that accord the Episcopal church rejects its help, crossing the street like the priest in the parable, unwilling to defile himself and attend to the sick. John Hirschauer, National Review, "Stop Harassing Samaritan’s Purse," 20 Apr. 2020 Then a spot debunking the notion that Trump had genuine concerns about corruption and nepotism, including dripping allusions to how unclean his own hands are in this area. Eric Zorn, chicagotribune.com, "Column: Get real, Democrats, and fight for public support of impeachment," 10 Dec. 2019 Apparently, outlawing clean, domestic natural gas allows one to justify importing unclean Saudi oil. Victor Davis Hanson, National Review, "The Cult of West-Shaming," 30 Jan. 2020 As the Ajinomoto campaign points out, the public scare over MSG unfairly placed the blame on Chinese food -- and is partly why many in the United States still think of Chinese food as processed, unclean, or unhealthy. Jessie Yeung, CNN, "MSG in Chinese food isn't unhealthy -- you're just racist, activists say," 18 Jan. 2020 But that requires a good deal of energy and also produces carbon dioxide at the same time, making the process decidedly unclean. William Wilkes, Washington Post, "How ‘Green Hydrogen’ Could Make ‘Green Steel’ Real," 23 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'unclean.' 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 unclean

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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Time Traveler for unclean

Time Traveler

The first known use of unclean was before the 12th century

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Statistics for unclean

Last Updated

11 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Unclean.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unclean. Accessed 25 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for unclean


How to pronounce unclean (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of unclean

: not clean : dirty
: not innocent and good : morally impure
: not allowed to be used by religious law


un·​clean | \ ˌən-ˈklēn How to pronounce unclean (audio) \

Kids Definition of unclean

2 : not pure and innocent
3 : not allowed for use by religious law

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