- wash ► VERB 1) clean with water and, typically, soap or detergent. 2) (of flowing water) carry or move in a particular direction. 3) be carried by flowing water. 4) (wash over) occur all around without greatly affecting. 5) literary wet or moisten. 6) brush with a thin coat of dilute paint or ink. 7) informal seem convincing or genuine: excuses just don't wash with us.► NOUN 1) an act of washing or an instance of being washed. 2) a quantity of clothes needing to be or just having been washed. 3) the water or air disturbed by a moving boat or aircraft. 4) a medicinal or cleansing solution. 5) a thin coating of paint or metal. 6) silt or gravel carried by water and deposited as sediment.● be washed out — Cf. ↑be washed out● come out in the wash — Cf. ↑come out in the wash● wash one's dirty linen (or laundry) in public — Cf. ↑wash one's dirty linen in public● wash one's hands of — Cf. ↑wash one's hands of● wash up — Cf. ↑wash upDERIVATIVES washable adjective.ORIGIN Old English, related to WATER(Cf. ↑waterless).
English terms dictionary. 2015.