adjective, clean·er, clean·est.
- innocent of any crime.
- not having a criminal record.
- carrying or containing no evidence of unlawful activity or intent, as controlled substances, unlicensed weapons, or contraband: The agents searched the car for drugs, but it was clean.
- not using narcotics.
adverb, clean·er, clean·est.
verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
- to empty in order to straighten or clean.
- to use up; exhaust: He had cleaned out his savings.
- Informal.to drive out by force.
- to empty or rid (a place) of occupants, contents, etc.: Eager customers cleaned out the store on the first day of the sale. The thief cleaned out the safe.
- Slang.to cause to lose all or almost all one's money or possessions.
- to wash or tidy up.
- to rid of undesirable persons or features: They cleaned up the local bars.
- to put an end to; finish: to clean up yesterday's chores.
- Informal.to make a large profit: They cleaned up in the stock market.
- (of a sail or sails) filled with wind; rap full.
- (of a sailing vessel) with all sails full of wind; rap full.
Origin of clean
Synonyms for clean
Antonyms for clean
Related Words for cleanesthygienic, unblemished, simple, clear, tidy, bright, graceful, elegant, orderly, spotless, neat, pure, blank, fresh, immaculate, wholesome, decent, good, plain, perfect
Examples from the Web for cleanest
Contemporary Examples of cleanest
So we tried to think of the freshest, healthiest, brightest, cleanest restaurant we knew.Finding Food Heaven on the Cali Coast
Jane & Michael Stern
August 17, 2014
The cheapest and cleanest of all energy sources is hydropower.Why Blow our Money on Wind Power?
January 26, 2013
The cleanest way to stop the carnage is to unify the Eurobond market—make all bonds the liabilities of all the member countries.We’re Doomed!
Charles R. Morris
August 11, 2011
Murder was now at a record low and New York was not just the safest, but also the healthiest and cleanest big city in America.Bill de Blasio Starts His Progressive Revolution
January 1, 2014
Historical Examples of cleanest
Yet there is truth in what he says, for, as you know well, the song was not of the cleanest.The White Company
Arthur Conan Doyle
It was the freshest and cleanest world he had ever seen and she was one with it.The Wall Street Girl
Frederick Orin Bartlett
He can play any position on the diamond, and is one of the cleanest men in the business.Frank Merriwell's Cruise
Burt L. Standish
Geneva is one of the finest, cleanest, and most charming towns in the world.From Pole to Pole
Sven Anders Hedin
The town is well built, and the cleanest I have yet seen since leaving Europe.In Eastern Seas
J. J. Smith
- (of a nuclear weapon) producing little or no radioactive fallout or contamination
- uncontaminatedCompare dirty (def. 11)
- innocent; not guilty
- not carrying illegal drugs, weapons, etc
- having its bottom clean
- having a satisfactory bill of health
- (of persons) free from ceremonial defilement
- (of animals, birds, and fish) lawful to eat
Word Origin for clean
Old English clæne "free from dirt or filth; pure, chaste, innocent; open, in the open," of beasts, "ritually safe to eat," from West Germanic *klainoz "clear, pure" (cf. Old Saxon kleni "dainty, delicate," Old Frisian klene "small," Old High German kleini "delicate, fine, small," German klein "small;" English preserves the original Germanic sense), from PIE root *gel- "bright, gleaming" (cf. Greek glene "eyeball," Old Irish gel "bright").
"Largely replaced by clear, pure in the higher senses" [Weekley], but as a verb (mid-15c.) it has largely usurped what once belonged to cleanse. Meaning "whole, entire" is from c.1300 (clean sweep in the figurative sense is from 1821). Sense of "innocent" is from c.1300; that of "not lewd" is from 1867; that of "not carrying anything forbidden" is from 1938; that of "free of drug addiction" is from 1950s. To come clean "confess" is from 1919, American English.
mid-15c., "make clean," from clean (adj.). Related: Cleaned; cleaning. From clean out "clean by emptying" comes sense of "to leave bare" (1844); cleaned-out "left penniless by losses" is from 1812.
Old English clæne "dirtlessly," also "clearly, fully, entirely;" see clean (adj.). Cf. similar use of German rein "clean."
In addition to the idioms beginning with clean
- clean as a whistle
- clean bill of health
- clean breast
- clean hands, have
- clean house
- cleanliness is next to godliness
- clean out
- clean slate
- clean someone's clock
- clean sweep
- clean up
- come clean
- have a clear (clean) conscience
- keep one's nose clean
- make a clean breast of
- make a clean sweep
- new broom sweeps clean
- take to the cleaners
- wipe the slate clean