Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To clear (a container or space, for example) of something unclean or unwanted.
  • intransitive verb To remove or eliminate (unwanted physical matter).
  • intransitive verb To rid (a person or thing) of something unwanted.
  • intransitive verb To remove or eliminate (an unwanted element).
  • intransitive verb Law To clear (a person) of a charge or conviction.
  • intransitive verb To rid (a nation or political party, for example) of people considered undesirable.
  • intransitive verb To get rid of (people considered undesirable).
  • intransitive verb To cause evacuation of (the bowels).
  • intransitive verb To induce evacuation of the bowels in (an individual).
  • intransitive verb To clear (a storage device) of unwanted data.
  • intransitive verb To delete (unwanted data) from a storage device.
  • intransitive verb Medicine To undergo or cause an emptying of the bowels.
  • intransitive verb To vomit or force oneself to vomit, especially as a symptom of an eating disorder.
  • noun The act or process of purging.
  • noun Something that purges, especially a medicinal purgative.
  • noun An instance of vomiting or of forcing oneself to vomit.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To cleanse or purify by separating and carrying off whatever is impure, heterogeneous, foreign, or superfluous; cleanse; clean, or clean out.
  • To remove by some cleansing or purifying process or operation; clear or wash away: often followed by away and off.
  • To clear from moral defilement or guilt: in this and next sense often followed by of or from.
  • To clear from accusation of a crime, as by ordeal, or from charge of contempt, as by oath showing that there was no wrong intent; free from taint or suspicion of crime.
  • To clarify; defecate, as liquors.
  • To operate on by or as by means of a cathartic.
  • To void.
  • To trim.
  • To become pure by clarification.
  • To take a purge; produce evacuations from the intestines by means of a cathartic.
  • To be cleansed or purified by the escape of certain gases, as a lake or river. See purging, 2.
  • To vomit.
  • noun The act of purging; purgation.
  • noun Anything that purges; specifically, a medicine that evacuates the intestines; a cathartic.
  • noun A plant of Virginia, probably Trinsteum perfoliatum, the root of which was used as a purgative by the aborigines.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The act of purging.
  • noun That which purges; especially, a medicine that evacuates the intestines; a cathartic.
  • transitive verb To cleanse, clear, or purify by separating and carrying off whatever is impure, heterogeneous, foreign, or superfluous.
  • transitive verb (Med.) To operate on as, or by means of, a cathartic medicine, or in a similar manner.
  • transitive verb To clarify; to defecate, as liquors.
  • transitive verb To clear of sediment, as a boiler, or of air, as a steam pipe, by driving off or permitting escape.
  • transitive verb To clear from guilt, or from moral or ceremonial defilement.
  • transitive verb (Law) To clear from accusation, or the charge of a crime or misdemeanor, as by oath or in ordeal.
  • transitive verb To remove in cleansing; to deterge; to wash away; -- often followed by away.
  • intransitive verb To become pure, as by clarification.
  • intransitive verb To have or produce frequent evacuations from the intestines, as by means of a cathartic.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun An act of purging
  • noun medicine An evacuation of the bowels or a vomiting.
  • noun A cleansing of pipes.

Etymologies

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

[Middle English purgen, from Old French purgier, from Latin pūrgāre, from pūrus, pure; see peuə- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English purgen, from Old French purger, from Latin purgare ("make pure, cleanse"), from purus ("clean, pure") + agere ("to make, do").

Examples

Comments

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  • The fanfiction.net site staff did this to all the MA rated stories, causing some very angry authors.

    June 13, 2012