verb (used with object), swept, sweep·ing.
- to pass the fingers or bow over (a musical instrument, its strings or keys, etc.), as in playing.
- to bring forth (music) thus.
verb (used without object), swept, sweep·ing.
- Whist.the winning of all the tricks in a hand.Compare slam2(def 1).
- Casino.a pairing or combining, and hence taking, of all the cards on the board.
Origin of sweep1
Origin of sweep2
Examples from the Web for sweep
Contemporary Examples of sweep
Decorative yes, but a daily handbag that will sweep through the closets of women worldwide?Handbags: The More You Pay, The Smaller They Shrink
December 29, 2014
The “24-hour news cycle” just makes them harder to sweep under the rug and ignore.I Blame People Who Blame the Media: Robert McCulloch’s Tone-Deaf Speech
November 25, 2014
The remains were shipped to Fiji just as the war was about to sweep the region.How Amelia's Plane Was Found
October 30, 2014
The sweep team and the motorcade soon arrived at the United Nations, where Obama delivered an address about climate change.
The sweep team was leading the way when it came upon an unattended red car parked along the route.
Historical Examples of sweep
From this position he commanded with his rifle the sweep of hillside all around the cabin.Way of the Lawless
I have never had to sweep out the schoolhouse since the time you know of.Rico and Wiseli
The posters, maculated with filth, garnished like tapestry the sweep of the curbstone.The Secret Agent
I hauled him in, and he told me, he thought, some one had hold of the other end of the sweep.Ned Myers
James Fenimore Cooper
These form the woods which sweep from rocky shore to topmost hill.Indian Legends of Vancouver Island
verb sweeps, sweeping or swept
- (in gambling) to win all the cards or money
- to win every event or prize in a contest
- the winning of every trick in a hand of whist
- the taking, by pairing, of all exposed cards in cassino
- a long oar used on an open boat
- Australiana person steering a surf boat with such an oar
- a rakelike attachment for the front of a motor vehicle for pushing hay into piles
- a triangular blade on a cultivator used to cut through roots below the surface of the soil
- an overwhelming victory or success
- a complete change; purgeto make a clean sweep
Word Origin for sweep
c.1300, perhaps from a past tense form of Middle English swope "sweep," from Old English swapan "to sweep" (transitive & intransitive); see swoop. Related: Swept; sweeping.
In addition to the idioms beginning with sweep
- sweep off someone's feet
- sweep under the rug
- make a clean sweep
- new broom sweeps clean
- (sweep) off someone's feet