1

whitewash

verb white·wash \ ˈhwīt-ˌwȯsh , ˈwīt- , -ˌwäsh \
|Updated on: 15 Jul 2018
whitewashed; whitewashing; whitewashes
1 : to whiten with whitewash
2 a : to gloss over or cover up (such as vices or crimes)
  • refused to whitewash the scandal
b : to exonerate by means of a perfunctory investigation or through biased presentation of data
3 : to hold (an opponent) scoreless in a game or contest

whitewasher

noun

Examples of whitewash in a Sentence

  1. a book that tries to whitewash the country's past

  2. refused to whitewash the governor's chronic disregard for the truth

Recent Examples of whitewash from the Web

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

First Known Use of whitewash

1591

in the meaning defined at sense 1

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2

whitewash

noun
1 : a liquid composition for whitening a surface: such as
a : a preparation for whitening the skin
b : a composition (as of lime and water or whiting, size, and water) for whitening structural surfaces
2 : an act or instance of glossing over or of exonerating
3 : a defeat in a contest in which the loser fails to score

Recent Examples of whitewash from the Web

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

First Known Use of whitewash

1678

in the meaning defined at sense 1

See Words from the same year
NEW! Time Traveler

WHITEWASH Defined for English Language Learners

whitewash

  • : to make (something) whiter by painting it with whitewash

  • : to prevent people from learning the truth about (something bad, such as a dishonest, immoral, or illegal act or situation)

  • : to defeat (an opponent) easily by winning every game, point, etc.


whitewash

  • : a white liquid mixture used for making surfaces (such as walls or fences) whiter

  • : a planned effort to hide a dishonest, immoral, or illegal act or situation

  • : a defeat in a game or contest in which the loser does not score any points


WHITEWASH Defined for Kids

1

whitewash

verb white·wash \ ˈhwīt-ˌwȯsh , ˈwīt- , -ˌwäsh \
whitewashed; whitewashing
1 : to cover with a mixture that whitens
2 : to try to hide the wrongdoing of
  • The company didn't try to whitewash their actions.

2

whitewash

noun
: a mixture (as of lime and water) for making a surface (as a wall) white


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