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[klohz-lahyn, klohth z-] /ˈkloʊzˌlaɪn, ˈkloʊðz-/
a strong, narrow rope, cord, wire, etc., usually stretched between two poles, posts, or buildings, on which clean laundry is hung to dry.
Origin of clothesline
First recorded in 1820-30; clothes + line1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for clothesline
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Zack's saddle was finally tied on with a piece of clothesline and, putting his foot in a rope stirrup, he mounted.

    Sunlight Patch Credo Fitch Harris
  • She says her clothesline goes out fifty feet, and they have a phonograph.

    Tutors' Lane Wilmarth Lewis
  • Then he picked me up and plumped me down hard in a chair and tied me fast to it with my own clothesline.

  • There was a clothesline strung down the whole length of the kitchen.

    The Rich Little Poor Boy Eleanor Gates
  • The foul and poisonous gases had mostly passed away, and the flame continued to burn as far down as the clothesline would reach.

    Reels and Spindles Evelyn Raymond
  • The broom had swept from under the stove those lengths of clothesline.

    The Rich Little Poor Boy Eleanor Gates
  • At the lower end of the clothesline was a strong steel snap.

    The Cassowary Stanley Waterloo
British Dictionary definitions for clothesline


a piece of rope, cord, or wire on which clean washing is hung to dry or air
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for clothesline



A very flat, fast line drive; frozen rope, rope (1930s+ Baseball)


To block or tackle by holding out one's arm in the path of a running player: He clotheslined him (1960s+ Football)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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