1

wash

play
verb \ˈwȯsh, ˈwäsh, chiefly Midland also ˈwȯrsh or ˈwärsh\
Updated on: 26 Jul 2017

Definition of wash

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1a :  to cleanse by or as if by the action of liquid (such as water)b :  to remove (something, such as dirt) by rubbing or drenching with liquid

  3. 2 :  to cleanse (fur) by licking or by rubbing with a paw moistened with saliva

  4. 3a :  to flush or moisten (a bodily part or injury) with a liquidb (1) :  to wet thoroughly :  drench (2) :  to overspread with light :  suffusec :  to pass a liquid (such as water) over or through especially so as to carry off material from the surface or interior

  5. 4 :  to flow along or dash or overflow against waves washing the shore

  6. 5 :  to move, carry, or deposit by or as if by the force of water in motion houses washed away by the flood

  7. 6a :  to subject (something, such as crushed ore) to the action of water to separate valuable materialb :  to separate (particles) from a substance (such as ore) by agitation with or in waterc (1) :  to pass through a bath to carry off impurities or soluble components (2) :  to pass (a gas or gaseous mixture) through or over a liquid to purify it especially by removing soluble components

  8. 7a :  to cover or daub lightly with or as if with an application of a thin liquid (such as whitewash or varnish)b :  to depict or paint by a broad sweep of thin color with a brush

  9. 8 :  to cause to swirl washing coffee around in his cup

  10. 9 :  launder 3 how the mob washes its money through corrupt bankers — Vincent Teresa

  11. intransitive verb
  12. 1 :  to wash oneself or a part of one's body

  13. 2 :  to become worn away by the action of water

  14. 3 :  to clean something by rubbing or dipping in water

  15. 4a :  to become carried along on water :  drift cakes of ice washing alongb :  to pour, sweep, or flow in a stream or current waves of pioneers washing westward — Green Peyton

  16. 5 :  to serve as a cleansing agent this soap washes thoroughly

  17. 6a :  to undergo laundering this dress doesn't wash wellb (1) :  to undergo testing successfully :  work 4 an interesting theory, but it just won't wash (2) :  to gain acceptance :  inspire belief the story didn't wash with me

wash one's hands of

  1. :  to disclaim interest in, responsibility for, or further connection with

Examples of wash in a Sentence

  1. We have to wash the dishes.

  2. Did you wash your hands?

  3. The flooding washed sand and silt all over the area.

  4. The pollution washes into rivers from nearby factories.

  5. Water washed over the deck of the ship.

  6. Waves washed up onto the beach.

Recent Examples of wash from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of wash

Middle English, from Old English wascan; akin to Old High German waskan to wash and perhaps to Old English wæter water


2

wash

noun

Definition of wash

  1. 1a :  a piece of ground washed by the sea or riverb :  bog, marshc (1) :  a shallow body of water (2) :  a shallow creekd Western US :  the dry bed of a stream —called also dry wash

  2. 2a :  the act or process or an instance of washing or being washedb :  articles to be washed, being washed, or having been washed

  3. 3 :  the surging action or sound of waves; also :  something resembling this action or sound the warm wash of applause that followed her … introduction — John Updike

  4. 4a :  worthless especially liquid waste :  refuseb :  an insipid beveragec :  vapid writing or speech

  5. 5a :  a sweep or splash especially of color made by or as if by a long stroke of a brush in the gray wash of early morningb :  a thin coat of paint (such as watercolor)c :  a thin liquid used for coating a surface (such as a wall)

  6. 6 :  lotion

  7. 7 :  loose or eroded surface material of the earth (such as rock debris) transported and deposited by running water

  8. 8a :  backwash 1b :  a disturbance in a fluid (such as water or the air) produced by the passage of an airfoil or propeller

  9. 9 :  a situation in which losses and gains or advantages and disadvantages balance each other

Examples of wash in a Sentence

  1. My jeans are in the wash.

  2. We could hear the wash of the waves against the rocks.

  3. The wash from speedboats is dangerous for swimmers.

Recent Examples of wash from the Web

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

First Known Use of wash

15th century


3

wash

adjective

Definition of wash

  1. 1 :  involving essentially simultaneous purchase and sale of the same security spurious market activity resulting from wash trading

  2. 2 :  washable wash fabric

First Known Use of wash

1848


Wash

abbreviation

Definition of Wash


Financial Definition of WASH

wash

What It Is

A wash occurs when two actions cancel each other out (such as a gain and an equal loss), effectively creating a break-even situation.

How It Works

Let's assume XYZ Company sells $1,000 worth of products. If these products cost XYZ Company $1,000 to manufacture, the transaction is considered a wash. Likewise, if an investor makes a $1,000 profit on an investment but loses $1,000 on another investment during the same time, the result is considered a wash.

Why It Matters

Obviously, profit motivates most companies to minimize wash transactions. However, wash transactions may have tax benefits, most of which are illegal. Investors should be aware of specific tax rules and prohibitions regarding wash transactions (see Wash Sale).


WASH Defined for English Language Learners

wash

play
verb

Definition of wash for English Language Learners

  • : to clean (something) with water and usually soap

  • : to carry (something) by the movement of water

  • : to be carried by the movement of water

wash

noun

Definition of wash for English Language Learners

  • : an act of cleaning something by using water and soap : an act of washing something

  • : a group of clothes, towels, sheets, etc., that are being washed or that are going to be washed

  • : the movement of water; especially : the waves made in the water after a moving boat passes by


WASH Defined for Kids

1

wash

play
verb \ˈwȯsh, ˈwäsh\

Definition of wash for Students

washed

;

washing

  1. 1 :  to cleanse with water and usually a cleaning agent (as soap) Wash your hands and face.

  2. 2 :  to wet completely with liquid The flowers were washed with raindrops.

  3. 3 :  to flow along or overflow against Waves wash up on the shore.

  4. 4 :  to remove or carry away by the action of water Wash the mud off the car. She was washed overboard.

  5. 5 :  to stand being cleansed without injury Linen washes well.


2

wash

play
noun

Definition of wash for Students

  1. 1 :  articles (as clothes, sheets, and towels) in the laundry

  2. 2 :  an act or instance of cleansing or of being cleansed We gave the car a good wash.

  3. 3 :  the flow, sound, or action of water

  4. 4 :  a backward flow of water (as made by the motion of a boat)

  5. 5 :  material carried or set down by water


Medical Dictionary

1

wash

play play
verb \ˈwȯsh, ˈwäsh\

Medical Definition of wash

  1. 1:  to cleanse by or as if by the action of liquid (as water)

  2. 2:  to flush or moisten (a bodily part or injury) with a liquid wash the wound with saline solution

  3. 3:  to pass through a liquid to carry off impurities or soluble components

  4. 1

  5. intransitive verb

  6. :  to wash oneself or a part of one's body

  7. 2:  to clean something by rubbing or dipping in water


2

wash

noun

Medical Definition of wash

  1. :  a liquid medicinal preparation used especially for cleansing or antisepsis—see eyewash, mouthwash



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