washout

1 of 2

noun

wash·​out ˈwȯsh-ˌau̇t How to pronounce washout (audio)
ˈwäsh-
1
a
: the washing out or away of something and especially of earth in a roadbed by a freshet
b
: a place where earth is washed away
2
: one that fails to measure up : failure: such as
a
: one who fails in a course of training or study
b
: an unsuccessful enterprise or undertaking

wash out

2 of 2

verb

washed out; washing out; washes out

transitive verb

1
: to wash free of an extraneous substance (such as dirt)
2
a
: to cause to fade by or as if by laundering
b
: to deplete the strength or vitality of
c
: to eliminate as useless or unsatisfactory : reject
3
a
: to destroy or make useless by the force or action of water
the storm washed out the bridge
b
: rain out
the game was washed out

intransitive verb

1
: to become depleted of color or vitality : fade
2
: to fail to meet requirements or measure up to a standard

Examples of washout in a Sentence

Noun He was a washout as a professional golfer. The team lost so many games that the season was a total washout. Yesterday's game was a washout. Verb most of the participants in the tough training program washed out the bright lights of the TV studio washed out her facial features, making her look as white as a ghost
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Slight chances for rain return mid-week, the weather service said, but coverage should be mostly isolated and a washout is unlikely. Rae Johnson, The Courier-Journal, 3 Sep. 2023 The dreary forecast meant another washout for many in New England, which already dealt with heavy rain, powerful thunderstorms, flash flooding and even tornadoes in the past month. CBS News, 7 Oct. 2023 Neither day is expected to be a washout, but the umbrella may get a workout a time or two. Molly Robey, Washington Post, 24 Sep. 2023 But Vermont had its own wake-up call in July as massive rains caused bridge washouts, flooding, and damage to roads and properties in the state. Millie Brigaud, The Christian Science Monitor, 15 Sep. 2023 Friday looks like a washout, and additional rain is likely this weekend, especially Sunday. Dan Stillman, Washington Post, 28 Apr. 2023 Some showers and thunderstorms may carry over into Friday and Saturday as well, but neither day will be a washout. Kxas-Tv (nbc5), Dallas News, 13 Sep. 2023 As with all venture capital endeavors, there have also been plenty of washouts. Paolo Confino, Fortune, 10 Aug. 2023 Mountains and high deserts north and northeast of Los Angeles saw a widespread 4 to 6 inches of rain, with some spots nearer 8 inches, leading to flash flooding and numerous road washouts. Amudalat Ajasa, Washington Post, 21 Aug. 2023
Verb
Blondes love to go for icy tones in winter, but ashy shades are notorious for washing out warmer complexions. Hanna Lustig, Glamour, 17 Nov. 2023 The crescent moon also sets in the evening this weekend, which should make for dark skies that are not washed out by bright moonlight. Denise Chow, NBC News, 16 Nov. 2023 The soundscapes also evoke the chaos of police crackdowns on nonviolent marches, in a sequence accompanied by Zavier A.L. Taylor’s striking projections (even if the images sometimes seemed washed out during Monday’s opening night performance). Thomas Floyd, Washington Post, 17 Oct. 2023 Death Valley National Park, which was ravaged by summer storms that washed out roads and trails, will partially reopen Sunday and allow visitors to see a large temporary lake. Roger Vincent, Los Angeles Times, 14 Oct. 2023 Weather forecast Between the unseasonable warmth of last year’s marathon day and the rain that has washed out most weekends this fall, weather conditions may be high on runners’ list of concerns. Jennie Coughlin, New York Times, 1 Nov. 2023 Starbird observed the fallout in the far corners of the Internet, where increasingly wild theories would surface—January 6th was an Antifa plot or an F.B.I. setup—then wash out. Jonathan Blitzer, The New Yorker, 21 Oct. 2023 That seems to be Arca’s project—to draw in, wash out, blend, destroy, create. Juan A. Ramírez, Vogue, 2 Nov. 2023 That could wash out the difference in the cost of goods versus being able to get a lower monthly payment. Nicole Goodkind, CNN, 9 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'washout.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

Noun

1873, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1540, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of washout was in 1540

Dictionary Entries Near washout

Cite this Entry

“Washout.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/washout. Accessed 11 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition

washout

1 of 2 noun
wash·​out ˈwȯsh-ˌau̇t How to pronounce washout (audio)
ˈwäsh-
1
a
: the washing away of earth (as from a road)
b
: a place where earth is washed away
2
: a complete failure

wash out

2 of 2 verb
(ˈ)wȯsh-ˈau̇t,
(ˈ)wäsh-
1
: to fade or cause to fade by or as if by laundering
2
: to exhaust the strength or energy
3
: to fail to measure up to a standard
4
: to destroy by the force or action of water

Medical Definition

washout

noun
: the action or process of progressively reducing the concentration of a substance (as a dye injected into the left ventricle of the heart)

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