[ wosh-er, waw-sher ]
/ ˈwɒʃ ər, ˈwɔ ʃər /


a person or thing that washes.
a flat ring or perforated piece of leather, rubber, metal, etc., used to give tightness to a joint, to prevent leakage, to distribute pressure, etc., as under the head of a nut or bolt.

Nearby words

  1. washdown,
  2. washed out,
  3. washed up,
  4. washed-out,
  5. washed-up,
  6. washer-dryer,
  7. washerman,
  8. washerwoman,
  9. washery,
  10. washeteria

Origin of washer

Middle English word dating back to 1275–1325; see origin at wash, -er1

Related formswash·er·less, adjective

Origin of wash

before 900; Middle English washen (v.), Old English wascan (cognate with Dutch wasschen, German waschen, Old Norse vaska) < Germanic *watskan, equivalent to *wat- (root of water) + *-sk- v. suffix + *-an infinitive suffix

1. clean, lave, rinse, launder, mop, swab. 4. bedew. 5. bathe. 24. ablution, cleansing, bathing. 37. swamp, morass.

Related formspre·wash, noun, verb (used with object)re·wash, verbun·der·wash, verbwell-washed, adjective

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for washer

British Dictionary definitions for washer


/ (ˈwɒʃə) /


a person or thing that washes
a flat ring or drilled disc of metal used under the head of a bolt or nut to spread the load when tightened
any flat ring of rubber, felt, metal, etc, used to provide a seal under a nut or in a tap or valve seat
chemical engineering a device for cleaning or washing gases or vapours; scrubber
Australian a face cloth; flannel


/ (wɒʃ) /


the Wash a shallow inlet of the North Sea on the E coast of England, between Lincolnshire and Norfolk


/ (wɒʃ) /



Word Origin for wash

Old English wæscan, waxan; related to Old High German wascan; see water

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 washer
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for washer


[ wŏsh ]


To cleanse, using water or other liquid, usually with soap, detergent, or bleach, by immersing, dipping, rubbing, or scrubbing.
To make moist or wet.


The act or process of cleansing or washing.
A solution used to cleanse or bathe a part.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with washer


In addition to the idioms beginning with wash

  • wash down
  • washed out
  • washed up
  • wash one's dirty linen in public
  • wash one's hands of
  • wash out
  • wash up

also see:

  • come out in the wash
  • won't wash
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.