undesirable or unpleasant; thankless: He left the dirty work for me.
very unfortunate or regrettable: That's a dirty shame!
not fair or sportsmanlike; unscrupulous: a dirty fighter.
hostile, insulting, contemptuous, or resentful: She gave me a dirty look.He made a dirty crack about the cooking.
(of a nuclear weapon) producing a relatively large amount of radioactive fallout.
Informal. obtained through illegal or disreputable means: dirty money.
Slang. using or in possession of narcotics.
Foreign Exchange. (of currency floats) manipulated, as by a central bank influencing or changing exchange rates (opposed to clean).
to make or become dirty.
Informal. in a mean, unscrupulous, or underhand way: to play dirty.
Informal. in a lewd manner: to talk dirty.
Idioms about dirty
do (someone) dirty, Slang. to treat unfairly or reprehensibly, as by cheating or slandering.
- dirt·i·ly, adverb
- dirt·i·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use dirty in a sentence
That could prevent dirty tricks or an “October surprise” and give watchdogs time to fact-check statements.Facebook’s Political Ad Ban Also Threatens Ability to Spread Accurate Information on How to Vote | by Jeremy B. Merrill for ProPublica | September 4, 2020 | ProPublica
The airlines provide barf bags, but the dirty secret is that people often don’t use them.What I learned from 5 years of cleaning airplanes in the middle of the night | matthewheimer | August 30, 2020 | Fortune
If you want to hurt him because you don’t like him and you want to exploit the connection because he has more cash than you, I guess you can do that, but it feels dirty.
Those that arrive damaged or dirty may never return to inventory.There’s one silver lining for fashion retailers in the pandemic | Marc Bain | August 13, 2020 | Quartz
That plant is one of the dirtiest in Texas, both in terms of climate and air quality impacts, according to a Rice University study.
She is the author of dirty Entanglements: Corruption, Crime and Terrorism (Cambridge University Press).ISIS, Boko Haram, and the Growing Role of Human Trafficking in 21st Century Terrorism | Louise I. Shelley | December 26, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
I was so relieved, until I thought about my dirty pantyhose hanging on the shower at home.
If only Sulzberger had managed to keep a zipped upper lip while leaving the dirty work to anonymous underlings.
Not one Argentine Jesuit lost his life during the dirty war, and he managed to save dozens of people.
As Americans, we still have a right to air both our dirty laundry and our R-Rated films.
I'd have enjoyed punching his proud head, for all that; it was a dirty way to serve a man who had done his level best.Raw Gold | Bertrand W. Sinclair
Shopkeepers not only occupied both sides of the crowded streets, but half their wares were exposed in and over the dirty gutters.Our Little Korean Cousin | H. Lee M. Pike
And in the incredibly small and incredibly dirty fastness of the stationmaster, they indeed found a Bradshaw.Hilda Lessways | Arnold Bennett
What if his father insisted upon his going to London, and doing any other dirty work which these fellows chose to put upon him?
This water, although of a dirty and thick appearance, is said to possess the valuable quality of resisting putridity for years.A Woman's Journey Round the World | Ida Pfeiffer
British Dictionary definitions for dirty
covered or marked with dirt; filthy
obscene; salacious: dirty books
sexually clandestine: a dirty weekend
causing one to become grimy: a dirty job
(of a colour) not clear and bright; impure
unfair; dishonest; unscrupulous; unsporting
mean; nasty: a dirty cheat
scandalous; unkind: a dirty rumour
revealing dislike or anger: a dirty look
(of weather) rainy or squally; stormy
(of an aircraft) having projections into the airstream, such as lowered flaps
(of an explosive device) modified to cause radioactive contamination: Compare clean (def. 5)
be dirty on Australian slang to be offended by or be hostile towards
dirty dog a despicable person
dirty linen informal intimate secrets, esp those that might give rise to gossip
dirty pool slang, mainly US, Canadian and Australian dishonest behaviour
an obscene word
something that is regarded with disapproval: federalism is a dirty word
dirty work unpleasant or illicit activity
do the dirty on British informal to behave meanly or unkindly towards
to make or become dirty; stain; soil
- dirtily, adverb
- dirtiness, 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
Other Idioms and Phrases with dirty
In addition to the idioms beginning with dirty
- dirty joke
- dirty look, give a
- dirty one's hands
- dirty tricks
- dirty work
- down and dirty
- wash one's dirty linen in public
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.