I UK [kliːn] / US [klɪn] adjective
Word forms "clean":
adjective clean comparative cleaner superlative cleanest
1) not dirty

Go and put on a clean shirt.

nice clean towels

clean and tidy:

I like to keep the place clean and tidy.

spotlessly clean:

Everything in the house was spotlessly clean (= extremely clean).

brush/scrub/sweep/wash/wipe etc something clean:

Tom had scrubbed the floor clean.

a) clean people and animals keep themselves and the places where they live clean

Pigs are actually very clean animals.

b) clean air or water has no dirty or dangerous substances in it

Many refugees are living in appalling conditions, without clean water and proper sanitation.

the clean country air

c) clean machines and processes do not create a lot of pollution

clean technologies

We already have the cleanest diesel fuel in the world.

2) not guilty of anything illegal or wrong

an attempt by the government to project a clean image

Why couldn't the president send somebody with a totally clean record?

I've got a clean driving licence (= I have not committed any driving offences).

a) clean language or humour does not offend people, especially because it does not involve sex

It was all good clean fun.

keep it clean (= not say anything offensive):

Keep it clean – there are children listening.

b) fair and done according to the rules

It was a good clean fight.

c) informal not carrying anything illegal

The police stopped him, but he was clean.

d) informal no longer using illegal drugs

Carter's been clean for six months.

3) clean shapes, lines, or movements are smooth, regular, or tidy

the clean lines of a good design

4) clean smells, tastes, and colours are light and fresh

The wine is clean and fresh, though with a robust flavour.

a) a clean piece of paper does not have anything written on it
b) a clean copy of a document has had all the mistakes in it corrected

a clean slate/sheet — a situation in which everything bad or wrong that you have done in the past is forgiven or forgotten, and you can make a new start

start/begin with a clean slate/sheet:

Firms often want to start with a clean sheet when setting up a new subsidiary.

nose I, squeaky clean, whistle I

II UK [kliːn] / US [klɪn] verb
Word forms "clean":
present tense I/you/we/they clean he/she/it cleans present participle cleaning past tense cleaned past participle cleaned
Other ways of saying clean:
wash to clean something using water and sometimes soap: Mum was outside washing the car. Go and wash your hands before dinner. wipe to clean a surface such as a table, window, or shelf using a cloth, especially a slightly wet cloth: A bartender was slowly wiping the counter. mop to clean a floor using water, soap, and a mop (=a cleaning tool with a long handle): Don't walk over the floor after I've mopped it. brush to rub something with a brush in order to remove dirt, dried mud, dust etc. You also brush your teeth using a toothbrush, toothpaste, and water: Brush your teeth after every meal. Ben was brushing mud off his jacket. scrub to clean something by rubbing it hard, using a stiff brush with soap and water: It's going to be hard to scrub that saucepan clean. sweep to clean a floor, a set of stairs, or a pavement using a brush with a long handle: We scrubbed the kitchen floor and swept the hall. dust to remove dust from furniture, shelves, and other surfaces, using a soft cloth: I hardly ever dust the bedrooms. cleanse to clean your skin thoroughly, often using a special liquid or cream: Gently cleanse the wound and apply a loose bandage.
1) [transitive] to remove the dirt from something

Paul is cleaning his car.

Do you want the windows cleaned?

You should clean your teeth twice a day.

clean something off something:

I cleaned the mud off my boots.

a) [intransitive/transitive] to remove the dirt and dust in a house or other building

We've cleaned the house from top to bottom.

I spent the morning cleaning.

b) [intransitive/transitive] to clean houses or buildings as a job

His mother supported the family by cleaning offices.

clean for:

The woman who cleans for me has got flu.

3) [transitive] to remove the inside parts of an animal, bird, or fish before cooking it
Phrasal verbs:
III UK [kliːn] / US [klɪn] adverb
Word forms "clean":
comparative cleaner superlative cleanest informal
used for emphasizing that something happens completely
clean forgot:

I was so worried about you, I clean forgot to feel sorry for myself.

clean through/off/out etc:

The bullet passed clean through his chest.

The blast blew the windows clean out of the building.

IV UK [kliːn] / US [klɪn] noun [singular] British
an occasion when you clean something
give something a (good) clean:

Hilary decided to give the cottage a good clean.

English dictionary. 2014.

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