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verb (used with object), bathed, bath·ing.
  1. to immerse (all or part of the body) in water or some other liquid, for cleansing, refreshment, etc.
  2. to wet; wash.
  3. to moisten or suffuse with any liquid.
  4. to apply water or other liquid to, with a sponge, cloth, etc.: to bathe a wound.
  5. to wash over or against, as by the action of the sea, a river, etc.: incoming tides bathing the coral reef.
  6. to cover or surround: a shaft of sunlight bathing the room; a morning fog bathing the city.
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verb (used without object), bathed, bath·ing.
  1. to take a bath or sunbath.
  2. to swim for pleasure.
  3. to be covered or surrounded as if with water.
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  1. British.
    1. the act of bathing, especially in the sea, a lake, or a river.
    2. a swimming bath.
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Origin of bathe

before 1000; Middle English bath(i)en, Old English bathian, equivalent to bæth bath1 + -ian infinitive suffix
Related formsre·bathe, verb, re·bathed, re·bath·ing.
Can be confusedbath bathe
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for bathe

scrub, submerge, soak, dip, scour, douse, clean, wet, steep, rinse, immerse, dunk, water, moisten, hose, suffuse, bath, shower, flood, sponge

Examples from the Web for bathe

Contemporary Examples of bathe

Historical Examples of bathe

British Dictionary definitions for bathe


  1. (intr) to swim or paddle in a body of open water or a river, esp for pleasure
  2. (tr) to apply liquid to (skin, a wound, etc) in order to cleanse or soothe
  3. to immerse or be immersed in a liquidto bathe machine parts in oil
  4. mainly US and Canadian to wash in a bath
  5. (tr; often passive) to suffuseher face was bathed with radiance
  6. (tr) (of water, the sea, etc) to lap; washwaves bathed the shore
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  1. British a swim or paddle in a body of open water or a river
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Derived Formsbather, noun

Word Origin for bathe

Old English bathian; related to Old Norse batha, Old High German badōn
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

Word Origin and History for bathe


Old English baþian "to wash, lave, bathe" (transitive and intransitive), from root of bath (q.v.), with different vowel sound due to i-mutation. Related: Bathed; bathing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper