from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To wash or wipe off (a wound, for example); cleanse.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To clean of undesirable material

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To cleanse; to purge away, as foul or offending matter from the body, or from an ulcer.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To cleanse; clear away foul or offensive matter from, as from the body or from a wound or ulcer.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. wipe away; to wash off or out, cleanse; chiefly in medical use: to clear away foul matter from the body


French déterger, from Latin dētergēre : dē-, de- + tergēre, to wipe.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Latin dētergēre, from dē- + tergēre. (Wiktionary)


  • Molière's Le Malade Imaginaire we find catharsis pre - sented in a farcical situation: Clysterium donare, Postea seignare, Ensuita purgare (“With a clyster deterge, then let the blood spurge, and finally purge”).


  • In order to prevent infection, it is necessary to properly deterge and disinfect the wound.

    Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day


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