Try Our Apps


Famous Last Words


[hwahyt-n-ing, wahyt-] /ˈʰwaɪt n ɪŋ, ˈwaɪt-/
a preparation for making something white; whiting.
the act or process of making or turning white.
Origin of whitening
First recorded in 1595-1605; whiten + -ing1


[hwahyt-n, wahyt-n] /ˈʰwaɪt n, ˈwaɪt n/
verb (used with or without object)
to make or become white.
1250-1300; Middle English whitenen; see white, -en1
Related forms
unwhitened, adjective
Whiten, blanch, bleach mean to make or become white. To whiten implies giving a white color or appearance by putting a substance of some kind on the outside: to whiten shoes. To blanch implies taking away natural or original color throughout: to blanch celery by growing it in the dark. To bleach implies making white by placing in (sun) light or by using chemicals: to bleach linen, hair.
blacken. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for whitening
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Many years after, their bones were whitening on this summit.

    The History of Peru Henry S. Beebe
  • He stared at it and still stared, with whitening face and pursed lips.

    Bob, Son of Battle Alfred Ollivant
  • Eddy, meanwhile, made not a whimper, but kept his whitening lips close shut.

    The Debtor Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
  • It was now whitening, hissing, and seething, like an enormous caldron.

    George Cruikshank William Makepeace Thackeray
  • Some had to be content with shields of wood, others of wicker-work, which they spent their time in coating with whitening.

    Hellenica Xenophon
  • She rose to her feet, whitening yet joyful with the thought.

  • The snow was falling and whitening the coffin as they lowered it into the ground.

    The Newcomes William Makepeace Thackeray
  • There was nothing in his whitening face to help me to a decision.

    In the Valley Harold Frederic
British Dictionary definitions for whitening


to make or become white or whiter; bleach
Derived Forms
whitening, noun
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
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for whitening

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for whitening

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for whitening