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mop1

[mop]
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noun
  1. a bundle of coarse yarn, a sponge, or other absorbent material, fastened at the end of a stick or handle for washing floors, dishes, etc.
  2. a thick mass of hair.
  3. a polishing wheel having several layers of cloth secured by a boss.
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verb (used with object), mopped, mop·ping.
  1. to rub, wipe, clean, or remove with a mop (often followed by up): to mop up a spill.
  2. to wipe as if with a mop: to mop the face with a handkerchief.
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verb (used without object), mopped, mop·ping.
  1. to clean or wipe with or as if with a mop (often followed by up): First he swept, then he mopped up.
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Verb Phrases
  1. mop up,
    1. Military.to clear (ground, trenches, towns, etc.) of scattered or remaining enemy combatants after attacking forces have conquered the area.
    2. Informal.to dispose of; complete; finish: He mopped up the rest of his business and went on a vacation.
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Idioms
  1. mop the floor with. floor(def 20).
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Origin of mop1

1375–1425; earlier map, late Middle English mappe, apocopated variant of mappel < Medieval Latin mappula a cloth, equivalent to Latin mapp(a) napkin + -ula -ule

mop2

[mop]
verb (used without object), mopped, mop·ping.
  1. to make a disappointed or unhappy face; grimace: an unruly child that mops and mows.
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noun
  1. a wry face; grimace.
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Origin of mop2

1560–70; akin to Dutch moppen to pout
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

wipedabswabpatrubspongewashdustpolishsqueegee

Examples from the Web for mopping

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He recognized K., and, mopping dry a part of the porch, shoved a chair on it.

    K

    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • Women were fanning themselves and men were mopping their foreheads.

  • The little man had dropped down on to a stone, and was mopping his forehead.

  • "Not at all," said Peter, mopping the perspiration from his forehead.

    The Vagrant Duke

    George Gibbs

  • He closed the door, and, mopping his injured nose, invited Annette to a seat.

    Despair's Last Journey

    David Christie Murray


British Dictionary definitions for mopping

mop1

noun
  1. an implement with a wooden handle and a head made of twists of cotton or a piece of synthetic sponge, used for polishing or washing floors, or washing dishes
  2. something resembling this, such as a tangle of hair
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verb mops, mopping or mopped
  1. (tr often foll by up) to clean or soak up with or as if with a mop
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See also mop up

Word Origin

C15 mappe, from earlier mappel, from Medieval Latin mappula cloth, from Latin mappa napkin

mop2

verb mops, mopping or mopped
  1. (intr) to make a grimace or sad expression (esp in the phrase mop and mow)
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noun
  1. such a face or expression
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Word Origin

C16: perhaps from Dutch moppen to pour; compare Dutch mop pug dog

mop3

noun
  1. (in various parts of England) an annual fair at which formerly servants were hired
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Word Origin

C17: from the practice of servants carrying a mop, broom, or flail, etc, to signify the job sought
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 mopping

mop

n.

late 15c., mappe "bundle of yarn, etc., fastened to the end of a stick for cleaning or spreading pitch on a ship's decks," from Walloon (French) mappe "napkin," from Latin mappa "napkin" (see map (n.)). Modern spelling by 1660s. Of hair, from 1847.

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mop

v.

1709, from mop (n.). Related: Mopped; mopping.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper