wash·​up | \ ˈwȯsh-ˌəp How to pronounce washup (audio) , ˈwäsh- \

Definition of washup

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the act or process of washing clean

wash up

washed up; washing up; washes up

Definition of wash up (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to be deposited by or as if by a swell of waves seaweed washed up on the shore
2 : to wash one's face and hands
3 British : to wash the dishes after a meal

transitive verb

1 : to get rid of by washing wash up the spilled milk

Examples of washup in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun To clean your face, either at the gym or back home, Kiehl’s face wash and moisturizer are an invigorating step in any washup routine. Naveen Kumar, CNN Underscored, "Your guide to returning to the gym safely — and in style," 23 Sep. 2020 The old washup area became a walk-in pantry A half-wall divides the kitchen from the family room. Elle Decor Staff, ELLE Decor, "Mission Accomplished," 5 July 2012 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Beyond the food, the restaurant also allows the homeless to wash up in their restrooms, and provides clothes and counseling as needed, all within the boundaries of the current COVID-19 restrictions, AP reported. Rachel Chang, Travel + Leisure, "Berlin Beer Hall Transforms Into Homeless Facility for the Holidays — Complete With Special Christmas Meals," 22 Dec. 2020 The islands often see debris wash up from the Americas. Peter Aitken, Fox News, "'Ghost Boat' with $80 million cocaine haul washes ashore on Pacific island," 18 Dec. 2020 The pandemic is only the latest reminder that the actions of countries far away can wash up on island shores. Washington Post, "Remote Pacific islands escaped the coronavirus this year. It devastated their economies anyway.," 18 Dec. 2020 Many of the packages that wash up are professionally wrapped; sometimes residents take the drugs instead of reporting them, fueling widespread drug availability and use. Jessie Yeung, CNN, "Ghost boat carrying 1,400 pounds of cocaine washes up on remote Pacific island," 16 Dec. 2020 Back in the 1980s and '90s, reports The Mercury News, hundreds of these creatures each year would wash up dead on shore after getting tangled in huge commercial fishing gill nets. Winston Gieseke, USA TODAY, "In California: Prisons report record high COVID-19 infections. And porpoises bounce back.," 3 Dec. 2020 A few days later, octopuses, seals and other sea creatures began to wash up on the beach. Mary Ilyushina, CNN, "A suspected toxic spill in Russia's Far East has killed 95% of marine life on the seabed," 7 Oct. 2020 In mid-September, an unusual stream of of flotsam continues to wash up on the coastline of the Bering Strait, from Shishmaref to Nome. Michelle Theriault Boots, Anchorage Daily News, "Deck boots, water bottles, fruit: An unusual marine debris event is coating Bering Strait beaches in trash from abroad," 25 Sep. 2020 If this were a tweedy English mystery, the magician’s body would wash up on shore on the last day of summer. Ron Charles, Washington Post, "In ‘Here We Are,’ Booker Prize winner Graham Swift casts a spell," 14 Sep. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of washup


1884, in the meaning defined above


1664, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about washup

Statistics for washup

Cite this Entry

“Washup.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/washup. Accessed 25 Feb. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Comments on washup

What made you want to look up washup? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

More Confusing Words—Quiz

  • cats on impossible timber
  • The magician ______ moved the selected card to the top of the deck.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!