\ ˈwīp How to pronounce wipe (audio) \
wiped; wiping

Definition of wipe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to rub with or as if with something soft for cleaning
b : to clean or dry by rubbing
c : to draw, pass, or move for or as if for rubbing or cleaning wiped his hand across his brow
2a : to remove by or as if by rubbing wipe the spots off the glass
b : to expunge completely wipe from memory the gruesome scenesAmer. Guide Series: Del.
3 : to spread by or as if by wiping

intransitive verb

: to make a motion of or as if of wiping something
wipe one's boots on
: to treat with indignity
wipe the floor with or wipe the ground with
: to defeat decisively



Definition of wipe (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : blow, strike
b : jeer, gibe
2a : an act or instance of wiping
b : a transition from one scene or picture to another (as in movies or television) made by a line moving across the screen
3 : something (such as a towel) used for wiping

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Examples of wipe in a Sentence

Verb Would you wipe the dishes? She wiped her eyes with a tissue. We were wiping the spots from the wine glasses. He wiped his hand across his forehead. Noun With a wipe, the spill was gone.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Sure, a cloth was spread over the planks, but diners wiped their dirty fingers on it. Jill Gleeson, Country Living, "Here's Why Proper Dining Etiquette Is Still Important, and What to Know," 6 Nov. 2019 The steep decline in share price wiped away almost $2 billion of the company’s valuation in the public market at the opening bell. BostonGlobe.com, "Aramco IPO slated for December," 30 Oct. 2019 The New Orleans Saints also had an apparent touchdown wiped away because of an early whistle in Week 2, when defensive end Cameron Jordan had a clear 87-yard fumble return for a touchdown against the Los Angeles Rams negated. Lorenzo Reyes, USA TODAY, "Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians: NFL 'referees aren't held accountable' for mistakes," 28 Oct. 2019 That early deficit wiped away the nerves for the Friars, who were quick to respond with a three-goal splurge en route to a 3-1 win. Glenn Graham, baltimoresun.com, "After slow start, No. 2 Curley soccer surges past No. 6 Loyola Blakefield, 3-1," 19 Oct. 2019 The Cardinals had a 66-yard touchdown pass wiped off the board on a holding penalty on their next drive. Ben Thomas | Bthomas@al.com, al, "Saturday Coastal Roundup: Josh Crook leads Baldwin County past Robertsdale," 19 Oct. 2019 The adventure game also completely wiped its Twitter account, deleting all of its tweets except for a link to the black hole’s livestream. Claudia Harmata, PEOPLE.com, "Fortnite Has Vanished — and Fans Have No Idea When or If It Will Return," 14 Oct. 2019 Despite not ever being in contention—more on that in just a second—Rory couldn’t wipe the smile off his face all week. Daniel Rapaport, SI.com, "Cameron Champ’s Storybook Win, Romo’s Foolish Critics and More From on Tour," 30 Sep. 2019 According to a poll released just this week by Global Strategy Group, a well respected national Democratic polling firm, a generic Democrat wipes the floor with Gardner, 48%-38%. Ian Silverii, The Denver Post, "Silverii: In the Democratic race to replace Sen. Cory Gardner, the more the merrier," 22 Aug. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The Glass Pantry will have low-waste lifestyle items such as reusable to-go containers, cutlery, napkins, cloth wipes and snack bags. Sarah Hauer, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "A zero-waste grocery store will open in Milwaukee's Walker's Point neighborhood," 23 Oct. 2019 Wal-Mart/Target-like places sell 99 cent packs of anti-bacterial wipes. Ann Lien, House Beautiful, "These Clever Hotel Hacks Will Upgrade Any Place You Stay," 4 Oct. 2019 On campus Friday — Day 2 of Regis’ information services being down — parents toted Clorox wipes and bookshelves as students moved into the dorms, many unaware of any technological problems. Elizabeth Hernandez, The Denver Post, "Regis University’s technology systems targeted by “malicious threat” likely from outside the country," 23 Aug. 2019 Her preshower cleaning routine took at least an hour and required entire tubs of facial wipes. Aimee Berg, New York Times, "The Boxing Champion Who Battles O.C.D.," 31 July 2019 Supplies most needed include headphones, calculators, sanitizing wipes and Ziploc bags. Mary Divine, Twin Cities, "‘Stuff the bus’ collects school supplies for Stillwater students," 30 July 2019 The industry standard for wipes and sprays is a solution that contains quaternary ammonium, an anti-bacterial compound. Scott Douglas, sun-sentinel.com, "Your gym is teeming with invisible members: Germs. Here’s how to avoid them.," 29 July 2019 The stock dropped as much as 13%, and closing with a decline of that magnitude would represent the company’s biggest one-day wipe-out since October 2015. Ryan Vlastelica, Fortune, "GrubHub Stock Tumbled but Analysts Say Investors Should Stay Hungry for the Company," 30 July 2019 The huge wipe-out in housing values led to a statewide rethinking of economic policy and priorities. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "As Nevada booms, Henderson and Reno grapple with growth limits," 23 July 2019

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a


1550, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for wipe


Middle English wipen, from Old English wīpian; akin to Old High German wīfan to wind around, Latin vibrare to brandish, and probably to Old Norse veipa to be in movement, Sanskrit vepate it trembles

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More Definitions for wipe


How to pronounce wipe (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of wipe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to clean or dry (something) by using a towel, your hand, etc.
: to remove (something) by rubbing
: to move (something) over a surface



English Language Learners Definition of wipe (Entry 2 of 2)

: a small, wet cloth that is used for cleaning
: an act of cleaning or drying something by using a towel, your hand, etc.


\ ˈwīp How to pronounce wipe (audio) \
wiped; wiping

Kids Definition of wipe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to clean or dry by rubbing Will you wipe the dishes?
2 : to remove by or as if by rubbing Wipe away your tears.
wipe out
: to destroy completely

Other Words from wipe

wiper noun



Kids Definition of wipe (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act of wiping : rub

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More from Merriam-Webster on wipe

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wipe

Spanish Central: Translation of wipe

Nglish: Translation of wipe for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of wipe for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about wipe

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