un·​washed | \ ˌən-ˈwȯsht How to pronounce unwashed (audio) , -ˈwäsht \

Definition of unwashed

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : not cleaned with or as if with soap and water
2 : ignorant, plebeian the unwashed masses



Definition of unwashed (Entry 2 of 2)

: an ignorant or underprivileged group : rabble usually used with greatthe great unwashed

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Other Words from unwashed


unwashedness noun

Examples of unwashed in a Sentence

Adjective a sink full of unwashed dishes a TV producer who knew what the unwashed masses wanted—and unhestitatingly gave it to them Noun Aunt Edna was fond of snootily reminding us that we need not take our manners from the great unwashed.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective So touching your face with unwashed hands could bring COVID-19 closer to your eyes, nose and mouth. Dalvin Brown, USA TODAY, "Coronavirus: NASA invented a wearable that reminds you not to touch your face," 29 June 2020 Other suggestions for preventing the spread of coronavirus include: covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue; sanitizing surfaces with a household disinfectant; avoiding touches your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands. Tiana Woodard, The Indianapolis Star, "The CDC added new coronavirus symptoms to its list. Here's what you need to know.," 27 June 2020 Participants appear on screen for meetings with a quaransheen of unwashed sweat on their faces. The Economist, "Johnson The rules of coronaspeak," 27 June 2020 In China, to slip into bed unwashed — after a day slowly accumulating grime and perspiration — is seen as unhygienic. John Kelly, Washington Post, "I used to think showering at night was weird. The pandemic has made it my habit.," 27 June 2020 On floors once walked by Russian aristocrats, residents argue over noise, unwashed dishes, demented or alcoholic neighbors, guests, and germs. Andrew E. Kramer, BostonGlobe.com, "Too close for comfort, and the virus, in Russia’s communal apartments," 13 June 2020 Refraining from touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. Sarah Brookbank, Cincinnati.com, "Ohio playgrounds can reopen today: How to play safe during coronavirus pandemic," 10 June 2020 Urine, century-old HVAC systems, and unwashed floors all mixed. August Cole, Wired, "AI, AR, and the (Somewhat) Speculative Future of a Tech-Fueled FBI," 5 June 2020 Movie theaters might seem like a Covid-19 breeding ground: audiences crammed into confined spaces, climbing over each other to get to their seats, unwashed hands probing self-service food stations. Adam Epstein, Quartz, "Under the right conditions, going back to the movies might not be as dangerous as you think," 1 June 2020

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1830, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for unwashed

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

7 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Unwashed.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unwashed. Accessed 9 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for unwashed


How to pronounce unwashed (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of unwashed

: not clean : not washed


un·​washed | \ ˌən-ˈwȯsht How to pronounce unwashed (audio) , -ˈwäsht \

Kids Definition of unwashed

: not having been washed : dirty unwashed grapes unwashed dishes

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More from Merriam-Webster on unwashed

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unwashed

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with unwashed

Spanish Central: Translation of unwashed

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