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

  • transitive verb To make sanitary, as by cleaning or disinfecting.
  • transitive verb To make more acceptable by removing unpleasant or offensive features from.

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

  • verb transitive to partially free something of microorganisms by cleaning or disinfecting
  • verb transitive (by extension) to make something, such as a dramatic work, more acceptable by removing potentially offensive material
  • verb transitive (computing) to remove sensitive or personal data from a database or file before giving the public access to it
  • verb transitive to revise a document in order to prevent identification of the sources

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

  • verb make less offensive or more acceptable by removing objectionable features
  • verb make sanitary by cleaning or sterilizing


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • QUESTION: Back to what was brought up earlier about Jenin, you have restated the administration's position, but are you concerned, at this point, that too much time has maybe gone by, allowing either side to so-called sanitize the area?

    CNN Transcript May 1, 2002

  • Hollywood needed to "sanitize" the movie from gay issues in order for the movie to be more accepted by bigger audiences and therefore bring more revenue, and the writer of the novel/book who is gay in real life sold the story and allowed the changes FOR MONEY.

    The Martian Child (2007)

  • By doing this in 2 steps over several months it will "sanitize" this unseamly act that needs to be done.

    Fresh swarm of superdelegates about to arrive

  • Recently, the Connell family has been dealt another blow -- an anonymous memo penned by someone identifying themselves as "Mark Felt" (the name of the man who was ultimately revealed to be "Deep Throat"), cataloguing an order and mission to remotely intercept and rig the instrument panel of Mike Connell's plane then "sanitize" the area.

    A "Deep Throat" Has Emerged in the Mike Connell Plane Crash

  • Over the years, the giant retailer, in exercising its own brand of censorship, has forced recording artists to change lyrics, 'sanitize' album covers, removed certain 'objectionable' magazines from its racks, and generally cultivated its own corporate sense of what the public should or shouldn't see.

    Al Norman: Wal-Mart Picks Free Speech Fight with Union

  • If I never had anyone disagree with me on my blog, you would think I "sanitize" the comments.

    My Blogger Commenting is malfunctioning: Please read this if your comment wasn't published

  • If I never had anyone disagree with me on my blog, you would think I "sanitize" the comments.

    Archive 2008-07-01

  • He's trying to kind of sanitize it in anticipation of probably a very emotional verdict.

    CNN Transcript Feb 27, 2008

  • Speculation centers on Bill Burkett, a retired Texas National Guard officer, who earlier this year said that he had overheard a conversation in the spring of 1997 about needing to "sanitize" Bush's Guard records.

    Capitol Letter: Where's the Outrage?

  • When they were in Atlanta, Georgia, US, my cousin reported a lot of awful stuff about what was being done to "sanitize" the city of homeless folks and sex workers.

    political crosstitch pieces! (update post 3!)


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